CORD calls off demonstrations as Jubilee ‘portrays’ goodwill
The Coalition for Reforms and Democracy (CORD) has called of the Thursday’s protests saying that the Jubilee administration has portrayed goodwill in the proposed dialogue to end the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) impasse.
Siaya Senator James Orengo said that CORD called off the protests to create a conducive environment for dialogue.
“We, therefore, wish to inform all our supporters and the country at large that CORD has once again agreed to call off Thursday protests to create a conducive environment for the conclusion of talks on the two or three issues that remain outstanding.”
He said that the opposition is open to dialogue and the Jubilee side should not complicate the process.
“We reiterate once more that as CORD, we hold no cards under the table and our commitment and objective is limited to resolving the IEBC crisis and ensuring that the people of Kenya can have, as of right, free, fair, transparent, credible, verifiable, peaceful and accountable elections in 2017 and beyond,” said CORD in a statement to newrooms.
However, Orengo said that the opposition will not go to dialogue without Machakos Senator Johnstone Muthama, who is in police custody after being arrested on Tuesday over allegations of hate speech, as he was an integral part of the CORD’s dialogue team.
Muthama was arrested against MPs Junet Mohamed (Suna East), Aisha Jumwa (Kilifi Women Rep.), Florence Mutua (Busia Women Rep.), Moses Kuria (Gatundu South), Kimani Ngunjiri (Bahati) and Ferdinand Waititu (Kabete) and University of Nairobi students’ leader Babu Owino over utterances alleged to constitute or border on hate speech and incitement to violence.
He argued that it was disturbing for the MPs to continue being detained without trial or charges being proffered against them
“We think this environment cannot be sustained to make progress in the dialogue. In the circumstances, Jubilee should conclude expeditiously their response to the issues we have raised and the persecution of our members and leadership must cease.”
CORD said that should the outstanding issues be resolved fast enough, it will resume demonstrations on Monday 20th and Thursday 23rd, 2016.
The opposition has been holding anti-IEBC demonstrations to push for the reform of the electoral body.
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