Succession politics dominate Nyeri prayer breakfast – The Star, Kenya

Kenya Kwanza and Azimio la Umoja politics took centre stage during Nyeri county’s eighth annual prayer breakfast. 
The event was organised by Nyeri Ecumenical Bishops Council at the Nyeri Golf Club with the theme, ‘Committing to Peace and Unity’.
Nyeri Catholic Archbishop Anthony Muheria led the clergy in urging those present to foster and maintain peace during the election.
A few politicians who attended took advantage to drum up support for themselves and their political alignments. 
Those present were Governor Mutahi Kahiga, speaker John Kaguchia and handful of MCAs, as well as Othaya MP Gichuki Mugambi.
Senator Ephraim Maina and Nyeri Deputy Governor Caroline Karugu were a no show.
This was a departure from the norm where the majority attend the prayers irrespective of their political alignments.
When it came to delivering apologies, they delivered them based on their political camps.
While Kahiga delivered apologies for his Kenya Kwanza colleagues, Mugambi delivered those of Azimio la Umoja politicians.
Kahiga delivered apologies for Mathira MP Rigathi Gachagua and Nyeri Women Rep Rahab Mukami who he said had other commitments in Nairobi and Mombasa respectively.
Mugambi, on the other hand, delivered apologies for the rest, saying they were involved in organising for President Uhuru Kenyatta’s visit to Nyeri on Wednesday.
The governor and Kaguchia took issues with President Kenyatta’s government for what they termed as imposing leaders on Kenyans.
Kahiga said when the people of Nyeri take a stand, they do not change.
“With a few months to go to the election, I would want to declare that the people of Nyeri must be respected for their faith and their beliefs,” he said. 
“It is important that we say this: the spirit of Mau Mau in our people does not allow us to be herded into a corner by anybody or any force. We shall independently make our choices of whoever we think we want.”
He said the people of Nyeri must be left to choose their leaders free of pressure from the ward up to the national level.
The speaker said people should be left to support any side of the political divide they wish to support without intimidation.
Without mentioning names, he advised incumbent leaders against imposing their successors on Kenyans.
President Kenyatta has openly declared his support for former Prime Minister Raila Odinga and is expected to support Jubilee candidates in all other elective seats.
But as the rest trained their guns on the President, Mugambi praised Kenyatta, saying he opened the doors for Nyeri leaders to deliver services to their people.
“I want to tell you that the development you see in Nyeri has been facilitated by our able President,” he said.
Mugambi said those who took the President’s advice seriously to avoid politics and work for their constituents have delivered.
He asked voters to re-elect those who have performed in the August polls. 
Nyeri Central deputy county commissioner Joseph Mwangi who represented both the regional and county commissioner said the government will provide security to all irrespective of party affiliation.
This, he said, will on the condition that politicians follow the laid down procedure when convening meetings.
The prayers bring together members of the business community, residents, the clergy, politicians, national and county government officials, security organs and the judiciary, among others.
(edited by Amol Awuor)
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