Raila challenges Uhuru to immediately act on high fuel prices

Leaders have piled pressure on Uhuru to intervene over the high cost of living.

President Uhuru Kenyatta and Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party leader Raila Odinga

Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga has called for immediate action from the government to cushion Kenyans from the high cost of living.

Speaking over the recent increase in the price of fuel on Thursday, September 16, Raila challenged President Uhuru Kenyatta's administration to uplift the lives of citizens who are just recovering from the Covid-19 pandemic that shrank the economy by 0.3% last year, compared with 5% growth in 2019.

"Kenyans who have been struggling to put food on the table since the onset of the pandemic now stand to have their collective plight worsened by the increased fuel prices. The prices should be lowered immediately to cushion the ordinary Wanainchi," Odinga said.

On his part Deputy President William Ruto also asked the government to find a way of addressing the issues raised by many Kenyans.

“This is mistaken in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic,” Ruto noted.

We must team up and manage this situation that threatens to go out of hand,” he added.

ANC leader Musalia Mudavadi also expressed solidarity with Kenyans and called on the government to immediately review the high cost of fuel.

"The recent increase in pump price is affecting all Kenyans. The high cost of fuel will affect all sectors of production, ultimately increasing the prices of goods and transport. The Covid-19 pandemic has already made the cost of living unbearable. The Government should not burden us more," Mudavadi said.

Cotu Secretary General Francis Atwoli asked Uhuru to audit the entire ecosystem around the energy sector.

It would interest the public to know that it only costs Ksh 49.84 to import a litre of petrol from the Middle East while an average Kenyan has to pay an extra Ksh 73.97 for every litre of petrol purchased.

“These obnoxious and ridiculous amounts in taxes and levies paid by struggling Kenyan workers have been occasioned by the fact that Parliament has failed to safeguard their interests even as primitive institutions like EPRA continue to punish workers without ceasing,” Atwoli said.

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