HomePoliticsAzimio-Kenya Kwanza talks to be held at neutral location after Ruto's intervention

Azimio-Kenya Kwanza talks to be held at neutral location after Ruto’s intervention

Reports suggest that President William Ruto instructed the majority leadership in Parliament to agree to Azimio’s demand for dialogue talks to be held outside of Parliament. Although it is unclear whether the President yielded to Azimio boss Raila Odinga’s demand for a non-parliamentary initiative, it has been confirmed that the talks will take place at a location away from the August House.

The President’s intervention is said to have been the decisive factor in the success of the dialogue, which had been on the verge of collapse as both sides refused to budge.

Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition party had insisted on holding the talks at Serena Hotel, while Ruto’s Kenya Kwanza alliance wanted them to be held under parliamentary supervision. However, after the President instructed the parliamentary team to yield to Azimio’s pressure, Raila asked his team to withdraw the venue from Serena so that they could agree on a neutral location.

A Kenya Kwanza MP close to the President confirmed that it was the President who had called the likes of Ichung’wa and Murugara and urged them to agree to hold the talks at any location. The President’s decision was made after it appeared that Azimio would resume their street protests the following week if the talks failed to take off as initially agreed. The anonymous MP added that the President’s move was a strategic climb down to demonstrate goodwill and leadership and set the talks on a path towards progress.

After the high-level interventions, the Azimio-Kenya Kwanza talks are now underway at the Panafric Hotel. The House leadership, led by Ichung’wa and his minority counterpart Opiyo Wandayi, are expected to hold pre-session talks to iron out any issues before the formal deliberations begin.

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