Borrow a leaf from selfless Matiba, Uhuru tells politicians in tribute

President Uhuru Kenyatta confers with DP William Ruto during the late Kenneth Matiba's funeral service at the All Saints Cathedral, Nairobi, April 25, 2018. With them is First Lady Margaret Kenyatta. /MONICAH MWANGI
President Uhuru Kenyatta confers with DP William Ruto during the late Kenneth Matiba's funeral service at the All Saints Cathedral, Nairobi, April 25, 2018. With them is First Lady Margaret Kenyatta. /MONICAH MWANGI

President Uhuru Kenyatta on Wednesday castigated political leaders saying it is unfortunate most of them only stand for themselves.

While eulogising the late Kenneth Matiba, the president said the current breed of politicians are full of themselves and have failed to nurture the future generation as Matiba did.

He spoke at the All Saints Cathedral Church in Nairobi.

Uhuru said Matiba was a leader who was committed to hard work and was willing to surrender his desire for personal gains to ensure prosperity for all.

"The late mzee was a caring man who was ready to sacrifice to make life better for others."

"He was willing to give all his property for the sake of others. But nowadays, everybody is for themselves," Uhuru said.

He said no other leader in the current breed of politicians can stand for what Matiba stood for.

"Show me a man who stands for what he stood for and I will be surprised. I have lost a father, friend and a mentor."

"What can be said about him (Matiba) cannot be said about others because he has proven a true leadership that was not scared of handing over, training, and mentoring the new generation," he said.

Uhuru maintained that Matiba was not just a husband and a father, but a man who stood for what Kenya stood for.

His sentiments were echoed by deputy president William Ruto who said the departed politician made huge personal sacrifices for the country.

"The rest of us, being younger, were not privileged to serve and know him at personal level but we are beneficiaries of his sacrifices," the DP said.

"Let us not waste or squander their efforts in negative ethnicity but build on their aspirations for a united Kenya," Ruto said.

He said by doing that, all leaders will have justified struggles for a free democratic Kenya.

First Lady Margaret Kenyatta and DP Ruto's wife Rachel Ruto were among the dignitaries that attended the memorial service.

Others present were former President Mwai Kibaki, Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka, Senate majority leader Kipchumba Murkomen and Interior CS Fred Matiang’i.

Bungoma Senator Moses Wetang'ula, Amani National Congress leader Musalia Mudavadi, Narc Kenya leader Martha Karua and Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko were also at the church.

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The funeral committee has, however, not given details on whether the former opposition maverick will be cremated or buried.

The family is yet to make official position whether Matiba will be buried or cremated in line with his wishes before death.

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