Raila Odinga: Forget Moi’s mistakes, remember him by the good things he did
Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga on Tuesday urged Kenyans to overlook the late president Daniel Moi’s weaknesses and, instead, focus on his achievements.
Mr. Odinga, speaking during Moi’s memorial service at the Nyayo National Stadium, said the ex-Head of State was only a human being hence was bound to make a few mistakes along the way as well.
The Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party boss eulogized Moi as one of the country’s greatest “freedom fighters” and credited him with taking over as second president and steering Kenya though a difficult period.
“He was one of the freedom fighters of our country, as has already been said, and he took over and became the second president our Republic at a time when this country was going through a very major transition,” said Mr. Odinga.
“He was human, he made great contributions, and like all human beings, he also had his other weaknesses. We remember the great things that he did: for example, introducing universal primary education to our country; free milk in school, the maziwa ya Nyayo; and trying to consolidate unity among the people of Kenya.”
Mr. Odinga also added that he and the late president Moi, during whose reign he was arrested and detained multiple times, had long resolved their differences and worked together for the betterment of the country.
“…he made some mistakes, I was one of the victims…but he was also forgiving, like I’m also forgiving, and we made our peace and we shook hands, and then we worked together to bring this country a new constitution,” he stated.
The AU Union High Representative for Infrastructure, who conveyed condolences to the Moi family on behalf of the Jaramogi Odinga family, also urged Kenyans to learn from Moi’s achievements and unite.
“…we learn to remember him for the good things that he did, which we want to carry forward as we try to unite our country and forget the mistakes which he made. We want to use that experience to bring what we call the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI),” he stated.