Thursday, April 1, 2021 – An hour-long early morning phone conversation between President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga defused the tension between the two camps over the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) and the handshake.

Highly-placed sources in the government said the conversation between the two Handshake partners dwelt on the state of the Handshake and future of the BBI project, following murmurs of discontent from Raila’s allies that the President was no longer keen on the twin issues.

 Also on the table was the growing perception that the Raila camp was considering forming an alliance with Deputy President William Ruto to counter Uhuru’s perceived support for the emerging “Sacred Alliance” coalescing around opposition figures Musalia Mudavadi, Kalonzo Musyoka, Moses Wetang’ula, and Gideon Moi. 

It is during the call-up that it was agreed that Raila mobilises his troops and reassures them both the Handshake and the BBI project remain on track and that the two leaders are firmly committed to the two issues. 

It was also agreed Raila dispels rumours that an alliance with Ruto was on the cards.

“The two held a telephone conversation at around 7 am, which lasted for about an hour; the issues revolved around the continued talk that the Handshake and BBI are under threat because the unity between the President and Raila had collapsed.”

There were also concerns about claims that Raila was leaning towards Ruto, and, therefore, it was agreed that Raila calls a meeting (with his troops) and discounts the narrative,” stated the source.

Following the phone chat, Raila summoned some of his key allies, including ODM National Chairman John Mbadi, Secretary-General Edwin Sifuna, Treasurer Timothy Bosire, and Senate Minority Leader James Orengo, for a meeting at his Karen residence where he has been recovering from the Covid-19 infection. 

Also invited to the meeting was National Assembly Minority Whip MP Junet Mohamed and Homa Bay Woman Rep Gladys Wanga.

A statement released to the media after the meeting declared the party’s unwavering commitment to the BBI Bill and the Handshake.

The Kenyan DAILY POST



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