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Ruto, Raila mourn Mwai Kibaki

Deputy President William Ruto and opposition leader Raila Odinga have led Kenyans in mourning former President Mwai Kibaki who died on Friday.

His passing was announced by President Uhuru Kenyatta in a televised address at State House Nairobi.

DP Ruto described Kibaki as a great economist and an advocate for peaceful co-existence in the country and the African continent and that he distinguished himself with a great legacy that he has left behind.

“Almost all of us here worked with him as his ministers. Today, as Kenyans, we have lost a great son of our nation. We are poorer today without him. He was a great inspiration,” he said.

“He has laid the solid foundation a foundation upon which the rest of us are building on and he has been a great inspiration for the Kenya Kwanza team, especially his focus on the economy of our country that today is our focus. So to him, to his family and friends tunasema pole sana.”

On his part, the former Prime Minister who worked with Kibaki under the grand coalition government termed him as a freedom fighter in the history of the country’s leadership in the pre-and post-independence Kenya.

“It is a very sad occasion for the nation and people of Kenya that this morning we lost the 3rd President of the Republic of Kenya Mwai Kibaki. Mwai Kibaki is one of the freedom fighters of the country; he has served this country for many years with diligence, fortitude, honesty and transparency. I had the pleasure,” Odinga said.

“Nobody was better than Mwai Kibaki when it came to creating team spirit and inspiring his ministers. On behalf of the Azimio La Umoja One Kenya Coalition Party and my family, we condole with the family of Mwai Kibaki. May the Lord rest his soul in eternal peace.”

Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka mourned Kibaki as a cheerful leader with a heart of humor who portrayed a spirit of selfless leadership.

“Kibaki is an iconic father figure in this nation; I had the singular privilege of serving as the vice president. There are very few leaders even in the African continent with the spirit of selflessness and a singular sense of purpose to their people,” he said.

ANC party leader Musalia Mudavadi eulogized him as an economist who liberated the country from the yolk of colonialism.

“We stand here to say that Kenya has lost an illustrious son, a great economist, who contributed to Pan-Africanism, who stood up and worked to lay our blueprint today even as we review the challenges we have faced over time,” Musalia said.

FORD Kenya Moses Wetangula recalled working with Kibaki saying: “One of his most distinguished statements was you young people ‘life is not about the people you like it is about the people you live with and that always made an indelible mark on the lives of many Kenyans.