Feb, 18th 2021 – ODM leader Raila Odinga, has faulted a plan to criminalize the hustler slogan associated with Deputy President William Ruto and his allies.
Addressing the media yesterday, Raila said that he had just learned of proposals by Parliament’s National Security Committee, seeking to criminalize Ruto’s hustlers versus dynasties campaign slogan.
The proposed punishments are severe fines, jail time, and even removal from office, for any leader who propagates the slogan.
Raila now strongly appeals to MPs to drop any attempt to legislate against the hustlers’ tag. He added that the country has come a long way from in the fight for freedom of speech hence there is no need to criminalize the hustler tag.
The ODM Leader said, “As a country, we fought for, and should respect free speech and association. We should be able to allow the deputy president and his team to continue with their chosen slogan without any inhibitions.”
Mr. Odinga however noted that it may not be the way to go to shut it down terming it as dangerous. His hopes are that the public may be able to realize it and reject it.
He said, “Those of us who see its dangers should continue educating our people against falling for it. I have faith that Kenyans will see through this divisive and potentially deadly rhetoric and its attacks on fellow Kenyans and reject it in the end.”
Raila however termed the slogan as scary with similarities to the Adolf Hitler’s national socialism saying, “It is a dangerous slogan. It is scary in its similarity to Adolf Hitler’s national socialism referred to as Nazism.”
He added, “These ideologies caused a great deal of trauma to Germany and the world. They ended in the Holocaust. I fear the “hustlers vs dynasties” narrative will have the same deadly consequences for Kenya as Nazism did for Germany.”
He said that the Deputy President and his team should be allowed to continue with their slogan and also appealed to the MPs to drop the attempts o legislate. “However, I would strongly appeal to MPs to drop any attempts to legislate against this otherwise deadly slogan,” he said.