The President and his deputy William Ruto led leaders from various sectors in seeking divine intervention at a time the country is facing serious challenges, including terror attacks, unemployment, high cost of living, hate-speech and corruption.
Speaking during the Kenya National Prayer Breakfast at a Nairobi hotel yesterday, Uhuru said these vices are deterrents to the nation’s prosperity and cautioned leaders against hypocrisy.
“Let’s see all of us preach against tribalism. Let’s see an end to negative ethnicity. Let’s see an end to hate speech,” the President emphasised, clearly depicting his worry over the trend that has reached apogee on social media. President Kenyatta maintained that God has never abandoned Kenya.
The plea by the Head of State comes amid political tension within his ruling Jubilee alliance caused by protests over the sharing of top public jobs, especially the transfer of Kiplimo Rugut from the helm of the National Youth Service.
“Let it not be that we stand here, say great things but what we read and hear coming from the same leadership in our dailies, radio stations and in public rallies goes completely contrary to what we have preached here,” said Uhuru.
“If only half of the people in this room took up the messages given to us today, this country would change within a year.”
Ruto said they will not allow corruption, mismanagement and tribalism in Government to flourish in their reign. The DP insisted that those charged with the responsibility of serving in Government must do so with fairness and equity.
“There is a road we have travelled, a slippery, treacherous road of hate, negative ethnicity, mismanagement and corruption. That road leads to divisions, anarchy and backwardness,” he said.
He added: “We committed ourselves that we will never travel that road again and we will not.”
He said the opposition must exercise responsible leadership for the sake of the country.
The disapproval of the Jubilee Government by the Opposition is expected to heighten at tomorrow’s Uhuru Park rally, following the return of CORD leader Raila Odinga from the US. Some Jubilee leaders have already urged the Inspector General of Police David Kimaiyo to monitor the opposition for hate speech.
Unlike last year, most opposition MPs kept off the prayer breakfast save for Kitui Senator David Musila, who was part of the organising team.
Yesterday, former US Ambassador to Kenya Scott Gration described Kenya as the new front door for Africa. Gration who was the guest speaker at the ceremony maintained that terrorism is a global phenomenon, saying this is not the time for tourists to leave Kenya.
“Kenya has so much potential. It’s a beautiful country with breath-taking landscape,” he said.
His successor Robert Godek as well as British Ambassador to Kenya Christian Turner also graced the occasion.
US, UK and Australia are among the Western countries that have issued travel advisories to their nationals citing terror threats, leading to the closure of 20 hotels at the Coast.
Gration said the fight against terrorism is not only for the Kenya Defence Forces and called on all nations to join hands.
He recalled the devastating September 11 attacks in US the by al-Qaeda that left over 3,000 people dead.