Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) leaders from Western and Nyanza regions are pushing for a unity of purpose under the Azimio la Umoja agenda that they launched last month.
The leaders who met in Kakamega led by former prime Minister and ODM party leader Raila Odinga said the main aim of the agenda is to unite all Kenyans and ensure that the country remains intact, even after the 2022 general election.
Speaking in a meeting with ODM leaders drawn from Kakamega, Vihiga, Busia, Trans Nzoia and Bungoma counties, Raila said the agenda will reinforce a sense of shared destiny and ensure that no shedding of blood is witnessed in the country during the electioneering period.
He noted that they envisage a country in which all communities forge unity of purpose irrespective of their political affiliations.
He said this can only be achieved if people of the same agenda are brought on board, while asking all like-minded individuals to join the movement to preach peace across the country.
“The partnership we are seeking must lead to transformation of the country and especially in the rural areas where we have little development,” the ODM leader said.
Raila noted that bringing together leaders from the regions with the same challenges will allow them to discuss what is ailing those counties and look for ways of addressing them.
He said one sector that has been identified as critical to the people of Western Kenya is sugarcane farming which needs to be addressed to ensure it pays farmers.
Other leaders present during the meeting at the Kakamega Golf Hotel Friday were the Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya, Busia Governor Sospeter Ojaamong, among others.
A resolution read on behalf of the leaders from Western region, Navakholo MP Emmanuel Wangwe said the region is part of the Azimio la Umoja which is focused on a call to unity.
Wangwe who is also the National Assembly Chief Whip said they have resolved to engage in politics to promote peace and stability and to continue to espouse economic freedom.
He said they support the handshake between President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga which brought peace in the country.
“We affirm support for the handshake to unite the country and as a requisite for national unity,” he noted.
The leaders also recognized the efforts put by the National Government to work with counties to lift the lives of residents in the region promising to continue in the same spirit to improve the lives of its residents.
On his part, Oparanya called for the revival of Mumias Sugar company saying its collapse has negatively affected the region’s economy.
He condemned politicians who are becoming a hindrance to the revival of the company noting that many families who depended on it are suffering.
The Governor urged President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga to prioritize revival of Mumias Sugar Company as a matter of urgency.
“The main problem in Western Kenya is the Mumias Sugar Company. Economy of the region has dropped since the collapse of the company,” the governor said.