‘Handshakes and BBIs will become our new normal,’ says President Kenyatta

‘Handshakes and BBIs will become our new normal,’ says President Kenyatta

President Uhuru Kenyatta has continued to drum up support for the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI), urging Kenyans to support the process which he says provides solutions to the challenges that continue to hold the country back from progress.

The Head of State, speaking during the Mashujaa Day celebrations, reiterated that the BBI holds a bright future for the country.

“As I end my address today, I appeal to all within our nation to unshackle our nationhood from the bondage of fear; and to boldly seize this moment of hope. It is time to embrace hope,” said Kenyatta.

He said the March 2018 handshake with his then political rival Raila Odinga, was “a temporary solution to a long-term search.”

“In a triumph of hope over fear, in March 2018, I began the journey of improving our nationhood by extending a ‘handshake’ to the Right Hon. Raila Odinga. The ‘handshake’ was a temporary solution to a long-term search. Our joint intention was to have BBI provide us with a roadmap to a long-term solution. And even then, this solution was not to become an end in itself. It was meant to be a continuous work-in-progress,” said Kenyatta.

Citing the Bible, President Kenyatta said the handshake with Odinga was biblically inspired.

“More so, because at the core of the ‘handshake’ were the words of Prophet Isaiah when he declared: “…Come, let us reason together!” This mantra of rivals reconciling and reasoning together in the interest of the nation, is what led to BBI,” said Kenyatta.

He anticipated that the ‘handshake will become a political tradition in the country.

“And if this ‘handshake’ endures, I anticipate it will become our New Normal and many future BBIs and ‘handshakes’ will continue to refine our nationhood and ensure that we dwell in unity, peace and liberty. In pondering this initiative of reconciliation, we were further inspired by the teachings of Saint Francis of Assisi when he said “…start by doing what is necessary, then it will lead you to what is possible and before you know it, you will find yourself doing the impossible”, said the President.

He said the handshake was necessary step to national healing and constitutional alignment.

“BBI was construed as the possible next step towards reinforcing our nationhood. And once we accomplish the necessary and the possible, then the impossible effortlessly becomes our reality,” he stated.

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