By VIVERE NANDIEMO, [email protected]
National Super Alliance leader Raila Odinga has been criticized online for supporting President Uhuru Kenyatta’s tax proposal in the spirit of ‘The Handshake’.
Mr Odinga’s decision to back the president’s proposal on fuel tax has already angered some of his lieutenants.
And now his supporters, who are set to bear the brunt of the increased taxes, have chided him for capitulating in the fight for the interests of citizens.
Some accused Mr Odinga of being hypocritical in his quest for social justice.
“I feel Raila Odinga and his Nasa brigade have betrayed us. How can they support a move that is meant to oppress us. Is this why we voted for them?” said Mr Bramuel Omondi, a resident of Migori.
He added: “Raila has always claimed that he fights for the common mwananchi. This is the platform on which he has been campaigning for the presidency in the last elections. This VAT issue has clearly brought him out as a hypocrite. As a supporter of Raila, I am so disappointed.”
Just last week, Mr Odinga had assured Kenyans that President Kenyatta would sign the Finance Bill, 2008, and postpone the 16% VAT on fuel.
“You should not panic at all. Very soon the President will scrap off the heavy levy on fuel products. He listens to public outcry,” Mr Odinga assured.
It is this assurance that has angered scores of Kenyans.
Lawyer Miguna Miguna described Mr Odinga as a traitor.
“Mr Odinga is a betrayer. He told Kenyans that president Uhuru Kenyatta will reverse the 16% VAT on fuel and sign into law the Bill Parliament had passed. But President Uhuru rejected the Bill. Mr Odinga, who has been reduced to a lap dog, still supports him,” Mr Miguna said in a tweet.
‘SOLD HIS SOUL’
Mr Obano Ondigi posted: “It’s official Raila Odinga has sold his soul. His political conscience is firmly controlled by president Kenyatta. He dances to any tune president Uhuru wants. So sad. His legacy is gone.”
Mr Felix Muriithi decried the dearth of opposition in the country. He said: “The official opposition of kenya are Kenyans on Twitter. Raila Odinga and Nasa have betrayed Kenyans with handshake. Kenyans will suffer because of handshake because handshake was only beneficial to Raila Odinga not Kenyans.”
Isaac Owiti tweeted: “Raila had to support this VAT increase or he refunds the hand cheque.”
Mr Odinga’s son, Raila Junior, was among those Kenyans who took issue with Mr Odinga and Nasa’s move.
“Unfortunately as a Kenyan citizen, I am unconvinced by the statement put out by NASA on the VAT on Fuel, non of the conditions they’ve put up are measurable and even if they were they are nowhere near closing the deficit on the debt. I call for my MP Ken Okoth to reject(President Uhuru’s memorandum to parliament)” he tweeted.