ODM party leader Raila Odinga officially announced that he would be running for President in the coming elections.

The opposition leader made the major announcement that was highly anticipated at the Azimio la Umoja convention on Friday.

The event was attended by thousands of fans and sycophants as they looked forward to hearing from Baba as he if fondly referred as.

His wife Ida Odinga officially handed over her husband to Kenyans before he took the podium. Saying that he has big dreams to change the country’s education, good healthcare and create employment for the youth.

I want to release you to perform, to do what you need to do for the multiple people…I know you won’t let them down…People of Kenya, I release Raila to you today, She said in part.

I present myself to you…

Raila outlined his 10-point plan that was heavy on social protection measures, including money transfers and universal healthcare. He also said that he will soon release a detailed manifesto that includes steps on fighting corruption, managing public debt, ICT and digital economy and promotion and protection of business especially private property.

The declaration by Odinga at the rally sets him up for a likely run against Deputy President William Ruto, Alfred Mutua among others. Odinga, 76, first ran for the top office a quarter century ago.

I do hereby accept to present myself as a presidential candidate,” Odinga told tens of thousands of supporters  in the capital, Nairobi. “I ask for nothing and will never ask for anything apart from opportunity to serve.” He declared amid screams and cheers from the crowd.

Raila said his handshake with President Uhuru Kenyatta was not a self-enriching enterprise. And that he he will never ask for anything from it, except for the opportunity to serve.

I must add here that with this reconciliation, I ask for nothing and I will never ask for anything except the opportunity to serve,” he said.

So whoever wins the race to succeed President Uhuru Kenyatta will have to contend with a growing government debt burden that’s been exacerbated by the corona virus pandemic. And also the new leader may have to deal with the aftermath of a potentially divisive election.

By Wanjiru Mbaru

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