Usinipeleke kortini, Ruto pleads with Omtatah over Finance Bill

"Nisamehe kidogo nipange mambo ya mahustler please."

In Summary

• The President said he needs to goodwill of all leaders to see the affordable housing project to its success and the senator should not impede on this quest.

• The first term senator had gone ham on the housing levy and told Ruto to his face that he was going to oppose the Finance Bill in court.

President William Ruto.
President William Ruto.
Image: FILE

President William has appealed to Busia Senator Okiya Omtatah not to go to court over the controversial Housing Fund.

Speaking at the Busia Stadium during an interfaith thanksgiving service, the President said he needs the senator's goodwill to see the affordable housing project to its success and help create jobs for the youth.

"Talk to our senator  please," he told the crowd then turned to the senator.

"Mr Omatata, so now you want to take me to court and what I'm doing is finding job opportunities for these people," the President said.

"Kwani sasa hutaki hawa watu wapateko kasi, please bwana Okiya (So now you don't want these people to get jobs)," Ruto said in jest.

The first term senator had gone ham on the housing levy and told Ruto to his face that he was going to oppose the Finance Bill in court.

Omtatah told the President in a bare-knuckled fashion that he was being misled by a clique of his allies that the Bill was good for Kenya.

"The Finance Bill has both good and bad things therein. Let not these people here lie to you that everything is fine. The negative things therein, many go against the Constitution," Omtata said. 

He said there are issues in the Bill that even the Supreme Court has already pronounced itself on and they ought to be honoured.

"You are my friend Mr President but the Constitution is a bigger friend to me. I have already prepared a petition to go to court. But when I heard you were coming to Busia I did not file it last week. I held on. I pray that we relook at this Bill. If we can avoid fighting in court it would be good as it is bad for friends to fight," he said. 

But Ruto appealed to Busia residents to convince the renowned rights activist to rethink his position on the Bill and not go to court.

"Nisaidieni jameni muongelesheni huyu jamaa apungune mambo ya kortini. Yeye amesema ni rafiki yangu na ni kweli ni rafiki yangu (Help me and talk this guy to reduce this court cases. He has said he is my friend and it's true he is my friend)," the President said.

But even then, he added, he would not hold it against the senator were he to make true his threat and head to court.

He said whereas the senator is opposed to the tax proposals and thge housing levy, he is not planning on destroying public property.

"At least hajapanga maandamano. Unajua kuna wengine wananitisha ati usipofanya hii tutapanga maandamano. Sasa hawa wengine ndio wabaya zaidi heri huyu Okiya (At least he has not planned protests. You there are others who are threatening me that they will hold protests unless I do this or that)," Ruto said.

Ruto said if anything, Omtatah should instead take opposition leaders to court for destroying peoples' property and businesses through mass protests.

"Wale watu wa handshake wenye walikuwa wanapanga mambao ya vyeo ya wadosi, haukuwapeleka kortini, mbona wewe unataka kunipeleka kortini mi nikipanga kazi ya mahustler? Si unaona unanionea tu bure. Wale ndio ungepeleka kortini kwa sababau walikuwa wanatusumbua," he said amid laughter.

(Those people who were disturbing us planning how to share leaders positions you never took them to court, why are you planning to take me to court when I'm planning jobs for hustlers? You se you're being unfair to me. Those are the people you should have taken to court because they were disturbing us)

"Nisamehe kidogo nipange mambo ya mahustler please (Have pity on me and let me plan hustlers' projects)," he said.

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