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Raila Odinga: I'll revive Kimwarer and Arror Dams

Azimio la Umoja-One Kenya presidential candidate Raila Odinga addressed supporters in Iten, Elgeyo Marakwet County on July 21, 2022. [Christophe Kipsang, Standard]

Azimio la Umoja One Kenya presidential candidate Raila Odinga has promised to revive the controversial Arror and Kimwarer dam projects, if he takes over power.

Addressing rallies in West Pokot county, Raila also promised to construct the Sh9 billion Muruny-Siyoi dam for the benefit of the region.

He noted that money that was meant to develop the dams was siphoned by corrupt individuals.

“Arror and Kimwarer's money was stolen, but we will complete the projects,” he said

“Fighting corruption can save the country more than Sh700 billion every year, which can help develop the country,” he added.

Raila told the residents that when he served as Prime Minister he initiated electricity distribution, Sebit cement factory and the Kitale-South Sudan highway among others.

“Economic liberation of Kenya is what we're focusing on, we want to fight corruption, illiteracy, poverty and underdevelopment,” he said

He regretted that insecurity has hampered development in the region.

The Azimo presidential candidate promised to employ all teachers that are qualified.

He hit out at Deputy President William Ruto saying he was planning to give wheelbarrows to graduates.

Raila assured residents that the social protection programme targeting to give vulnerable families Sh6,000 monthly stipends will be implemented.

“Baba care will cater for health services, including pregnant women and the elderly. We will equip health centres and introduce free health insurance scheme,” he said. 

He urged locals to turn out 100 per cent and vote for him, and asked the youths to carry the elderly to polling centres.

“For the men no sleeping from August 6 to 9, you will celebrate after baba has won. Youths to spend at the polling station to ensure baba wins,” he said.

West Pokot governor John Lonyangapuo praised the locals for turning up in large numbers to receive Raila and urged them to vote for him.

“We have qualified teachers but are unemployed, if we elect Raila, we will not be understaffed. He insisted on the government to give the Pokot community a national code,” he said.

Suba North Junet Mohammed slammed Ruto for not helping the residents of West Pokot despite being in government for last ten years.

Elgeyo Marakwet Governor Alex Tolgos told the Pokot community to rally their neighbours in Elgeyo Marakwet to join them in voting for Raila to be president.

Those who accompanied Raila were former Aldai MP Sally Kosgey, Dr Mukhisa Kituyi, former Gatanga MP Peter Kenneth, Cotu Secretary General Francis Atwoli,

Pokot South MP David Pkosing among other leaders.

Meanwhile, Azimio presidential candidate has called for peaceful campaigns during his North Rift tour. 

He said Kenyans should remain united despite the outcome of the August 9 presidential election. "We are all brothers and sisters, and the election should not divide us. Kenya will remain a united country after the election and we should move forward," he said in Iten yesterday. 

Raila addressed rallies in Tot and Iten in Elgeyo Marakwet, Kolowa in Baringo before proceeding to Chepararia and Lomut in West Pokot. 

The Azimio presidential candidate received a warm welcome in Iten where he faced hostile youth in April. 

He urged voters in the North Rift to support his fifth stab at the presidency, saying he will tackle insecurity in the volatile Kerio Valley belt. 

Raila avoided attacks against Deputy President William Ruto and instead outlined the Azimio administration agenda. 

He promised that if elected president, he will lower fertiliser prices from the current Sh6,200 to Sh2,000, saying that reduced cost of inputs will result in increased food production. 

"The forthcoming elections will be different from 2007, 2013 and 2017 polls. This year's election will mark the country's economic revolution. I can only compare it with 1963 which marked our liberation. Today, we have devolution and counties are run by governors, and this election will be an economic liberation, to empower the youth and women," he said.

"We will stop the importation of maize unless necessary so that Kenyan farmers get higher prices for their produce," he added. 

Raila pledged to revive fluorspar mining in Kerio Valley, which collapsed five years ago, resulting in loss of more than 3,000 jobs. 

He promised to roll out social protection programme, upgrade dilapidated infrastructure and ensure free education up to the university level. 

"We will secure decent jobs for the youth and establish a fund that will enable businesses to grow and will be repaid after 7 years. Boda boda riders will be offered funds so that they own their own motorcycles," he said. 

“There was a fluorspar mining factory in Elgeyo Marakwet which created job opportunities for many residents. I will ensure that the mining factory is up and running as soon as we get elected,” he added.

Mr Tolgos who is eying the Elgeyo Marakwet Senate seat on the Jubilee Party ticket said he was optimistic that Raila will elevate Tambach Teachers Training College to a public university.

The governor asked the Azimio presidential candidate to help Marakwet teachers recover prime land they bought in Eldoret two decades ago which was allegedly taken by powerful forces.

“Elgeyo Marakwet professionals met and presented proposed projects to Raila and we are hopeful that they will be implemented under Raila's leadership,” he said.

Prof Lonyangapuo assured Raila of West Pokot county support.

“As a community, we know that Raila will clinch the Presidency this time, and we do not want to go to the opposition. West Pokot has been in the opposition, but will not go back there in this election,” he said.