Kenya: Just Ignore Odinga’s Noise, Gachagua Tells U.S. Envoy Whitman

Nairobi — Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua has asked the U.S. envoy to Kenya Meg Whitman to “ignore noise from the Opposition” and carry out her diplomatic duties.

Ambassador Whitman has come under fire from Azimio leader Raila Odinga and his allies after commenting on 2022 Kenya’s election outcome which she described as “most credible election in Kenyan history.”

“I want to urge Ambassador Meg to ignore the noises and acclimatize to the Kenyan way of doing things -Perennial complaints year after year, she should stay focused and go on with her work,” Gachagua said Friday when he presided over the closing ceremony of the 10th Devolution Conference in Eldoret.

Earlier President William Ruto had also weighed in on the matter, saying Whitman “only stated facts.”

“The American ambassador said two statements of facts; she said the last election was the freest and the fairest in the history of Kenya, which is a statement of fact, she said Kenya is open for business which is also a statement of fact,” Ruto said Friday when he presided over the 2Jiajiri/GIZ Graduation Ceremony in Nairobi’s Kasarani area.

Gachagua hailed Ambassador Whitman as Kenya’s “good friend” for playing an active role in increasing the volume of trade between Kenya and the US.

As a result of her efforts, Gachagua said the US is currently, Kenya’s largest trading partner in the world.

Instead of being criticized, Gachagua said Ambassador Whitman “deserves commendation, not vilification for being truthful.”

“She has taken time to sit with the president, to sit with me, to sit with our Cabinet ministers to unlock business opportunities and to bring investors from America,” he added.

Gachagua further asked Odinga and his allies to be respectful to the country’s development partners and refrain from dragging them into their internal wrangles.

While commenting on Odinga’s threat to push for the recall of Ambassador Whitman, Gachagua described the move as “part of the denial syndrome.”

“You cannot speak in a public forum, before national television, and say that you have the capacity to recall an ambassador of the United States accredited to this country by the American government. You are just an ordinary Kenyan with no such powers,” he said.

“You lost the election in August 2022. William Ruto won fair and square, the earlier you accept this reality the better for you otherwise you are just living in denial,” he said.

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