Nasa leader Raila Odinga has hinted that he will accompany President Uhuru Kenyatta to China next week to seek funds for the extension of the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) from Naivasha to Kisumu.
The visit is meant to convince the Chinese government to allow Kenya borrow another Sh368 billion loan so as to help revive the Kisumu inland port whose fortunes have dwindled due to the collapse of the dilapidated railway.
Initially, Raila was against the government borrowing but when he met Uhuru for the now infamous ‘Handshake’, the ODM leader stopped criticizing Jubilee leadership in what has been termed as hypocrisy.
The hadshake has witnessed division among Uhuru and Raila camps and now China trip is expected to elicit more talks as Kenyans are beginning to conclude that the two leaders united for the interest of their business and not Kenyans.
Between 2017 and 2019, Raila has been on record opposing borrowing and other unnecessary projects meant to steal from Kenyans as captured below.
- On 1st June 2017, Raila Odinga said the SGR project was to cost Sh227 billion but was inflated to Sh327 billion by Jubilee.
- On 22nd June, 2017 in Naivasha, Raila Odinga claimed the SGR was extended to Naivasha not for economic necessity but to benefit the Kenyatta Family.
- On June 29, 2017 in Narok, Raila Odinga said Jubilee leaders were paid Ksh 130 Billion in kick-backs from SGR increasing his earlier figure by 30B.
- On 4th July, 2017 during a Radio Maisha interview, Raila Odinga alleged that the SGR project will stop at President Kenyatta’s family farm in Naivasha.
- On 5th July, 2017 Raila Odinga promised to prosecute those who inflated the cost of the SGR if he becomes president.
- On 9th September 2018, Raila Odinga asked the government to cease heavy borrowing in order to reduce the country’s debt and tax burden.
- On 20th April 2019, the same Raila Odinga says: _”I will be part of the delegation that will accompany the President to China next week to negotiate 380 Billion SGR loan.”