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Jalang'o, Sonko give their take as Kenyans react to public Raila-Ruto meeting

It was the first public meeting between former Prime Minister Raila Odinga and President William Ruto after the hotly contested August 2022 elections

President William Ruto, Sports CS Ababu Namwamba and Azimio la Umoja Coalition leader Raila Odinga at Kasarani stadium for Kipkeino Classic on May 13, 2023

Saturday, May 13 saw former Prime Minister Raila Odinga and President William Ruto meet in public for the first time since August 2022 elections.

The two leaders first met in Nyandarua during the funeral service for Mukami Kimathi and warmed up to each other amid cheers from the crowd.

A few minutes later, the duo met at Kasarani Stadium for the 2023 Absa Kip Keino Classic where the best of global and local athletics talent converged for the showpiece.

Photos of Ruto chatting with Odinga made rounds with many opining that leaders sitting together and engaging cordially regardless of their differences in opinion is a good sign.

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Lang’ata MP, Phelix Odiwuor Kodhe is among the leaders who reacted to the photos noting that such are the things he loves seeing.

Things I love seeing! God bless Kenya! Tusonge mbele!” Jalang’o wrote.

Former Nairobi governor Mike Sonko also noted that there are no permanent enemies in politics writing:

“NO PERMANENT ENEMITY IN POLITICS: They met, sat together, laughed together in solidarity with the mau mau freedom fighters as they laid Mama Mukami Kimathi to rest thereafter proceeded together to Kasarani for an international event to cheer our athletes where they also went to the changing room together to change to sportswear while sisi kwa ground and social media hate one another coz of them.”

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The former Nairobi county boss advised Kenyans to learn from the two leaders never to let their political differences turn them against each other.

“My simple advice to all Kenyans Let's not turn against each other due to political differences, especially when someone is looking for half a loaf.” Sonko wrote.

Nairobi-based lawyer, Donald B. Kipkorir also warmed up to the photos writing:

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“When President William Ruto & Rt. Hon. Raila Odinga shake hands & call each other “my Brother”, the Country cheers! Only political brokers aren’t happy. But the rest of the Country is.”

After a hotly-contested elections, Raila and Ruto have been on opposite ends a number of times, including most recently when the opposition called for mass demonstrations over the high cost of living and what it terms as its stolen victory in the August 2022 elections.

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