Cord vows to proceed with rallies despite ban

A showdown is looming on Friday between the Coalition for Reforms and Democracy (CORD) and the police as the opposition leaders have vowed to defy a ban on their rally scheduled for Friday in Eldoret and Ntulele on Saturday.

In statement read by Senate minority leader Moses Wetangula at Orange House on Wednesday, Cord maintained that they will proceed with both rallies as had earlier been planned and expect the police to provide them with security.

Wetangula said the purported cancellation of the rally is a deliberate effort by the government to revive the division of the country into KANU zones and opposition zones in a bid to stop the people from exercising their freedom of association as contained in the constitution.

“We wish to clarify that we will proceed with our rallies as planned in Eldoret  and Ntulele” Wetangula said.   The minority leader condemned the cancellation of the rallies saying as the opposition they are committed to defending the constitutional rights of Kenyans for free expression, association and Assembly.

“We expect the police to provide security to the peace loving Kenyans who will attend all our rallies. We threaten no one in our rallies and expect no one declare us threats to peace or threaten us” Wetangula said.   “We call upon the National government to respect the constitution by providing security at these cord events.

Provision of security is the primary role of any government on earth “he added.   Wetangula who is also Cord co-principal also announced that they have instructed their members of parliament to with withdraw earlier censure motion against Ole Lenku as it will serve no purpose.

“Ole Lenku is just a functionary under President Uhuru Kenyatta, we have decided to deal with the President directly as he is also the chairman of National Security Council” Wetangula said.   “We have instructed our law makers in the national assembly to formally write to speaker of the national assembly Justin Muturi to withdraw the censure motion “he added.

The defiance by Cord to continue with their rallies in Eldoret come even as the Uasin Gishu Governor Jackson Mandago had also barred Cord from using venues in the town for rallies due to what he termed as tensions in the region over the panned meetings.   Police have also argued that cord rallies will not take place in Eldoret because of the volatile security situation in the area.

The former Prime Minister also reiterated that they will continue with their rallies as that is the only avenue to engage with the public.   “We will continue to engage with the public and get their views on the solutions to problems facing our country therefore our rallies will continue as earlier planned” Odinga said.   Odinga added “Our rallies are not for incitement but a very peaceful engagement with the public, police have a responsibility to provide security and we expect that in all our rallies”   CORD is set to hold what they are calling consultative rallies in Eldoret’s 64 stadium, Iten, and Kapsabet this weekend.

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