President Uhuru’s Western tour which was expected to start earlier this month has been postponed over Covid-19 fears as well as Uhuru’s tight schedule.
Although President Uhuru’s three-day state visit to the region has sparked controversy between Raila Odinga and Musalia Mudavadi’s allies, Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya on Sunday, August 1, dismissed allegations that the president’s visit was suspended following tensions between local leaders.
Oparanya who was speaking in Migori when he accompanied party leader Raila Odinga to MP Junet Mohammed’s home said Uhuru’s Western tour was put on hold until next week due to his tight schedule and the recently revised Covid-19 containment measures put in place by the Ministry of Health.
“The tour was pushed to next Sunday, but would be heavily scaled down to avoid huge crowd turnouts,” Oparanya said.
He said the Head of State spent the better part of last week in the United Kingdom, necessitating rescheduling of most of his events at State House.
“Complaints by Members of Parliament and Senators for being left out are irrelevant because there are governors who requested for the president’s tour,” Oparanya added.
President Uhuru was expected in Kakamega on Sunday afternoon where he was expected to inspect and launch major projects.
During his development tour to the region, President Uhuru is expected to commission the construction of a KSh100 million gold refinery plant at Iguhu in Ikolomani constituency.
He is also expected to announce plans for the revival of debt-stricken Mumias Sugar Company and some short-term capital injection into the struggling Nzoia sugar factory.
The postponement of Uhuru’s tour comes barely days after politicians from the Mulembe nation threatened to boycott President Uhuru Kenyatta’s planned tour of the region.
“We have not received any information about the president’s itinerary ahead of his visit. However, we recently saw him meet a few governors from the region.
“So all we are saying is that if the president wants to visit the governors, he can go ahead and do so, but we will not intrude on meetings to which we have not been invited,” Bundalangi MP Raphael Wanjala said in a press conference.