By Farah Adan:
Days after Majority leader Aden Duale and other MPs allied to the ruling Jubilee coalition alleged Cord governors have been giving opposition leader Raila Odinga monthly stipends and sponsoring his trips abroad and across the country, Wajir Governor Ahmed Abdullahi has come out guns blazing against the majority leader vehemently denying the claims.
Speaking at a fundraiser in Wajir town in aid of Masjid Wusda, the governor said Duale’s remarks were aimed at diverting the nation’s attention from the real corruption bedeviling the country.
Duale did not mince his words when he said Wajir and Garissa sponsored the CORD leader’s recent trip to the region.
“I can confirm that during Raila’s recent visit to Wajir and Garissa counties, the choppers were paid for by the governors, and I have evidence to prove it.” said the Majority leader on Wednesday.
But in a quick rejoinder, the agitated Wajir Governor who was elected on an ODM party ticket asked Duale to stop politicizing the war against corruption if at all he was serious about tackling the menace.
“Raila’s activities are funded by party member contributions and politicizing it to tarnish the name of innocent leaders is selfish on the part of the ruling coalition. Nothing is further from the truth in as far as Duale’s remarks are concerned” said the tough talking governor.
Abdullahi squared the ball back to the central government which he said was already bogged in several high profile corruption cases and hence looking for a scapegoat.
The Governor pointed out the recent theft involving the government financial system IFMIS saying most of those implicated were employees of the central government.
“Nine counties have seen funds stolen through the IFMIS system and all those implicated are either staff of the National treasury or the national bank. They are the custodians of this system” he said.
“We don’t want every discourse in this country to just be about propaganda and counter propaganda between parties (Jubilee and CORD mostly)” he added.
The Governor called for objective approach to the fight against corruption.
“It is not true that we paid for Raila’s charter flight during his visit here, if anyone has the receipts, let them produce”, he said.
Abdullahi said his position has always been to avoid public exchange with other leaders but added “any provocation will be met with the reply it deserves”.
The governor found no wrong doing in his welcoming Raila to the county saying Duale himself visited Wajir on several occasions and given a red carpet reception.
“Even if we were to pay for Raila’s flight, we won’t break any laws as long it has something to do with our day to day operations as a county. His party is a majority in this County and he has the right to visit us anytime” said Abdullahi.
It is not the first time Majority Leader Aden Duale is making weird allegations against the CORD co-principal.
Raila has since dismissed Duale’s allegations and refused to respond to him saying they did not play in the same league.
Kshs 6,207,769 was raised in cash and pledges during the fundraiser in the function that was also graced by Wajir West MP Abdikadir Ore.