Ruto scoffs at Raila’s plan to legalise chang’aa


Ruto scoffs at Raila’s plan to legalise chang’aa

Deputy Preident William Ruto has scoffed at Raila Odinga’s plan to legalise chang’aa should be (Raila) manage to ouster President Uhuru Kenyatta on August 9 – this coming just two days after the National Super Alliance (NASA) presidential candidate told Busia residents that he would lift the ban on traditional brews.

Arguing that alcohol abuse has been immensely detrimental to the youth, Ruto said that Raila’s campaign promise would worsen an already dire situation.

Speaking during a church service at Presbyterian Church of East Africa (PCEA) Ol Kalau in Nyandarua County, said that legalizing traditional brews would reverse the gains in the government’s war against illicit alcohol.

“We already have a serious problem with alcoholism and drug abuse. It will be a step in the wrong direction to legalize changaa and busaa,” said Ruto.

According to National Authority for the Campaign against Alcohol and Drug Abuse (NACADA) over 6,000 people die annually from alcoholism while 2.5 million people require rehabilitation.

Ruto said – given the harm that alcohol abuse has caused – leaders should not do anything that could promote the societal vice.

The DP asked religious institutions to support the Government in its efforts to curb alcoholism and drug abuse among the youth.

“Let’s join forces in dealing with this menace. Pray for the Opposition which intends to legalize illicit brew to have a change of heart over this matter,” added the Deputy President.

Ruto, at the same time, called for peaceful elections, urging religious leaders to continue praying for peace to prevail during and after the August General Election.

“I urge you to continue praying for our country to hold peaceful elections and let the will of the people prevail,” he said.

Leaders who accompanied the Deputy President included Cabinet Secretary Sicily Kariuki (Youth nd Gender Affairs), Governor Daniel Waithaka (Nyandarua), MPs David Kiarao (Ol Kalau), Kimani Ichungwa (Kikuyu), David Gichigi (Kipipiri), aspirants Francis Kimemia (Governor), Jeremiah Kioni (MP Ndaragwa), Mwangi Githiomi (Senate) and Faith Gitau (Women Representive) among others.

Mr Waithaka called for peaceful campaigns during this electioneering period.

The Deputy President later issued cheques to Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) at Anglican Church (AC) Primary School, Ol Kalau.

Mr Ruto said the Government was working towards helping IDPs to engage in income generating activities and lead normal lives like the rest of Kenyans.

“It’s unacceptable for someone to live on ones land while the owner is a squatter elsewhere, “Ruto said.

The Deputy President and Mr Ichungwa asked fellow politicians to desist from divisive politics and instead commit themselves to unite the country.

“We ask those we are competing with to engage in politics that will unite Kenyans. We do not want what happened in 2007-2008 to happen again,” Ruto said.

Mr Ruto cautioned Nasa leaders against preaching hatred among communities.

Raila stirred controversy recently while addressing a rally in Kajiado County, when he allegedly asked locals not to allow “outsiders” to settle there – remarks that some said were meant to stir ethnic tensions.

Uhuru was quick to admonish Raila over the remarks, saying that his rival was promoting tribal politics.

Raila’s camp, however, said that the Jubilee boss was misinterpreting Raila’s remarks out of desperation.

“The President has, out of the blues, accused Mr. Odinga of asking communities to return to their ancestral lands. Mr. Odinga has made no such utterances. The diversity of Mr. Odinga’s support base alone militate against him making such utterances. The President’s remarks are therefore far-fetched and smacks of desperation.”

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