Raila denies claims he would not accept defeat from polls

KENYA: Prime Minister Raila Odinga has denied reports appearing in an international daily yesterday claiming he would not concede defeat if he lost tomorrow’s election.

Prime Minister Raila Odinga. AP photo

Prime Minister Raila Odinga. AP photo

The Premier said at no time did he speak of this during interviews last Friday with the Financial Time, BBC Radio and TV.

In a statement sent to newsrooms through his Communication Secretary Dennis Onyango, Raila considered the article works of a writer and organisation with fixed idea of Kenya as the country goes to elections. At a mammoth rally convened by the Pastor Dr Edward Owuor of Repentance and Holiness Church at Uhuru Park last week, Raila joined other presidential candidates in assuring Kenyans that he would accept defeat and work with the winner in free and fair elections.

During the presidential debates he has repeated the same sentiments, ”I will accept defeat and I will raise any grievances so arising in the courts of law.”

In the statement from Office of the Prime Minister dated March 2, Raila recalls the questions put to him during the interview on Friday. Asked what if he would be at the end of his political career if he loses the elections, the PM’s answer was: “I strongly believe I am going to win this election, and in round one.

However, in the unlikely event that I lose, I believe there will be a role for me in Kenya. I can write my memoirs, I have a family to take care of, and, most importantly, I have a party that I will continue to guide so we can deepen democracy in Kenya. I believe the democratisation of Kenya has been my biggest contribution to the country and I want to push it to the end whether I am in or out of elective politics.”

By George Orido, The Standard