Some Kkenyan social media users are clearly unhappy that Opposition chief Raila Odinga was denied the opportunity to speak at the Madaraka Day fete in Nyeri.
The NASA principal Raila reached Kabiruini grounds at about 10am shortly before President Uhuru Kenyatta.
Nyeri Governor Samuel Wamathai did not invite Raila to speak and called DP William Ruto instead.
Ruto spoke about peaceful campaigns and then invited the President who was last to speak at the 54th celebrations.
Kenyans on social media said Ruto should have allowed Raila to speak.
“So Raila Odinga took his valuable time to go to Nyeri to listen yet his attendance was not recognised by anyone,” User Allan Gaya said.
“You go to an event held deep in the enemy’s stronghold and expect to be treated with decorum?”
Facebook user Kitu Kuruka wondered whether Jubilee Party leaders knew the ODM chief was there.
But Juma Moha wrote: “Some people are all over complaining that Raila was not recognised in Nyeri but my question is, ‘as who? Raila is just an Opposition leader…I mean…a normal Kenyan.”
Ken Winda said the NASA flag bearer played his part by attending the function.
“Had he not attended he would have been branded unpatriotic but he beat them to it,” Winda said.
Nyar Joram said she was glad Raila did not speak since the ideal is to “tenda wema nenda zako (do good and leave) whether invited or not”.
Joram noted Raila would have demonstrated cowardice by giving the occasion a wide berth.
Richard Cole asked: “Isn’t it amazing thatRaila trends even without delivering a speech after being ignored?”
Hundreds of Kenyans arrived as early as 6am at Kabiruini ASK showground despite the chilly weather.
Guests walked into the venue as directed by police officers manning the gates.
On Madaraka Day, Kenyans celebrate the moment in history when the country was granted internal self-rule by the British colonialists.
Business boomed in the town ahead of the celebrations at which at least 30,000 people were expected.
After the event, the President will hosted to lunch at the county commissioner’s residence near Nyeri town.
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