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Controversial cleric suggests Raila supporters are ‘cursed’

A cleric remembered for misquoting the bible at a function attended by President-elect Dr William Ruto’s in 2020 now says the violent nature of the youth from the Luo region has brought what he describes as a curse that has led to them missing out on the presidency a record six times.

Father John Pesa of the Coptic Holy Ghost church claimed the youth from the region unleashed terror on those who were not vying on the popular Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party ticket during campaign season and are also fond of hurling unprinted abuses on religious leaders.

Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Alliance leader Raila Odinga who was floored by Dr Ruto in the August 9 General elections, hails and has a fanatical support from the region.

Odinga, represented by a battery of lawyers, is expected to challenge Dr Ruto’s win at the Supreme Court on Monday.

The ODM leader has unsuccessfully vied for Presidency in 1997, 2007, 2013, 2017 and 2022.

His late father Jaramogi Oginga Odinga who was also the first Kenyan Vice President finished a distant fourth in the 1992 presidential elections.

“The Luo Nation is now in a very bad situation and I call for peace as we wait for the Supreme Court ruling. However, we should question where the rain started beating us. Our youths are always violent and hurl big abuses on religious leaders. This is not good and might have brought a curse which has seen us miss the presidency in every election,” said Father Pesa in an interview with Nairobi News .

The cleric pointed to a case in point where ODM supporters ejected Kisumu East MP elect Shakeel Shabbir from the podium and served him a thorough beating during Mr Odinga last campaign rally in Kisumu on August 5.

Shabbir himself is on record saying he survived death by a whisker from the chaotic incident. He braved the ODM wave in Luo Nyanza to retain his seat as an independent candidate.

“Did you see how the youths beat Shabbir and booed religious leaders when Raila was in Kisumu? It was a big shame. Personally I have been a victim since our youths now and then have hurled weighty abuses at me. It is a sad thing and they have to repent to free the community,” added Father Pesa.

The man of the cloth has called for prayer, fasting and repentance so that Mr Odinga can win the Supreme Court, saying the residents from the region have been in a sad mood since the presidential elections were announced.

“The people have refused to move on, everyone is sad and there is a lot of anger. Let us pray hard so that justice can prevail on this issue,” he said.

Father Pesa found himself on the receiving end from Kenyans on October 12, 2020 after misquoting the bible. While likening Dr Ruto to biblical character David, he claimed it was King Solomon who killed philistine giant Goliath.

The preacher revealed he is yet to congratulate Dr Ruto on his win as he shifted his allegiance to the Odinga and is still hopeful the Supreme Court will hand him a life line in politics.

The controversial priest was in 2020 ordered by court to pay a 21-year-old man Sh500,000 for detaining him for more than 25 months while conducting faith healing on him.