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Foreigners should respect Kenyans, says Raila
Sunday, July 15, 2012

Prime Minister Raila Odinga has directed the ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Attorney General to strip off Shelter Afrique's Managing Director Mr. Alassane Ba of his diplomatic immunity so that he can face charges of assault.

The PM said failure to that Ba should instead be declared a persona non grata in Kenya.

"It is unacceptable when we read in the media that a foreigner has assaulted a Kenyan woman and that he cannot face the law because he enjoys diplomatic immunity'', he said.

Addressing the inaugural Orange Women Democrats League Convention at the Bomas of Kenya in Nairobi Saturday, Mr. Odinga said it was saddening to see how foreigners assault and mistreat Kenyans at the places of work and just get away with it.

The prime minister was reacting to reports that Ba had grievously assaulted a Kenyan Ms. Karen Njeri  and had invoked his diplomatic immunity to avoid facing charges.

"We in Kenya have resolved that we shall respect our women that is why we have inserted in our Constitution that our women will become part and parcel of our society and we have said that at least 30% of all positions will be reserved for women'', he noted.

Raila said that Kenyans through the new constitution want to create a new, fair and just society where all women can live with dignity and enjoy equal opportunity.

He assured the victim that the government will make sure that justice is done as her constitutional rights had been violated.

"And to Karen Njeri Kandie, I say on behalf of all men, we are sorry about what happened. And we shall not let you down.''

Ms. Njeri is the Finance Manager of the organization. Shelter Afrique an institution that deal with the development of affordable housing.

The attack is said to have occurred on Thursday at the institutions head quarters in Upper Hill Nairobi. Ba is from Mauritius.

"We cannot allow foreigners to beat Kenyans in our own country" said the PM.

The PM lamented that Kenyan woman continues to be the face of poverty 50 years after independence.

He said if elected president he will champion the emancipation of women.

'Discriminate women'

"We cannot continue to discriminate against women," said the PM. He lauded Kenyan women for overwhelmingly voting for the new constitution which he said will benefit them a lot after the general election.

He said under his government Kenya will have world class hospitals that will offer both affordable and assessable medical aid.

"We have for long continued to hold harambees to send patients to India and South Africa for specialized medical attention. In five years under my government this practice will stop because we will have invested in health sector," he said.

He further said to empower women, he will ensure that small and medium enterprises will get affordable loans to create jobs.

On agriculture the PM said large scale farming is the way forward for Kenya so as to mitigate hunger. He further said women should be allowed to own land.

The PM said ODM's agenda was to develop Kenya and improve on the livelihood of Kenyans saying that his opponents' sole agenda was how to block him from ascending to power.

ODM chairman Henry Kosgey said the party had ideal agenda and was sure of winning the election. Mr. Kosgey said ODM was ready to form the next government and urged it members to go out and sell its policies to the masses.

He said Mr. Odinga was the only candidate in the Presidential race with credentials that can make him clinch the top seat. "When I look around, I only see Raila as the most suitable person to succeed President Kibaki" added Mr. Kosgey.

Mama Ida Odinga cautioned women against fighting amongst themselves saying that was the main cause of their fewer numbers in top positions. She urged the women to unite, work as a team and help build Kenya.

Mama Ida lauded the ODM for establishing the Orange Women Democrats League which she said was the best vehicle for the party women to chat their way forward. She said she will work with any team of women leaders that will be elected in office after today's elections saying the elections should not be the cause of divisions among the women of the party.

Women representatives from all the eight regions of Kenya spoke about the challenges they face as women in their respective regions. The women at the convention resolved to go out into the grassroots level to campaign for Mr. Odinga and mobilize as many women as possible to support his candidature.

They resolved to use the OWDL to marshal support for the party in all corners of the country.

The PM wrapped two Days marathon activities at the Bomas of Kenya where both the Orange Young Democrats League and the Women League held national conventions, Friday and today respectively.

During the two days the ODM party leader urged the youth and women to campaign for the party vigorously head of the 2013 general elections.

Present in Saturday's event were legislators Dan Mwazo, Elizabeth Ongoro, Margaret Wanjiru, Milly Odhiambo, Hassan Joho, Rachael Shebesh, Beatrice Kones, Dr. Oburu Oginga, ODM Executive Director Ms. Janet Ong'era, Head of the Raila Odinga Presidential Campaign Secretariat Mr. James Ongwae, outgoing Secretary of Women Affairs in ODM Mrs. Grace Mboja among others.

More than 1300 women delegates from across the country attended.


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