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WATCH: Archbishop Arthur Kitonga prays for Raila to ‘retire in peace’

Kenya marked Labuor Day on May 1, 2023, at the Uhuru Gardens located in Lang’ata, Nairobi County.

In attendance were President William Ruto, Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua, Prime Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi, COTU Secretary General Francis Atwoli, and several other political elites.

During the prayer segment as the celebrations began, Archbishop Arthur Kitonga prayed that opposition leader Raila Odinga, the party leader of the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM), ‘age and retire in peace’ instead of engaging in demonstrations.

“…we pray for peace so that all our businesses go on well. We don’t want to see maandamano (demonstrations) in this country again….Lord we pray that your peace continues and that the issue of demonstrations on the roads that are destroying people’s businesses, people who are celebrating things that do not matter, we refuse them in the name of Jesus.

…Lord, we pray that the matters of opposition to come to an end. We pray for the Honorable Raila Odinga to age in peace and to retire in peace. We pray for peace for him. The time he has left is for retirement, not demonstrating on the road. We pray that he leaves these things of demonstrating on the roads. Let him rest in peace because you gave this work to His Excellency Ruto and we don’t want to see any more conflicts beginning today on Labor Day,” prayed Archbishop Kitonga in part.

His prayers elicited shouts, laughter and celebrations among a people whose heads were solemnly bowed in prayer as they rejoiced in his prayers concerning Raila Odinga.


The opposition is set to return to the streets tomorrow, May 2, 2023, with their demonstrations against the high cost of living and against President Ruto’s presidency which they claim was a result of a stolen presidential election.

The opposition had suspended their demonstrations a few weeks ago in favor of bipartisan talks between them and government representatives but this hit a stalemate as the government chose some members from the Azimio La Umoja One Kenya Alliance to represent them instead.

The opposition said this was a sign of bad faith from the Kenya Kwanza government as President Ruto went for Jubilee-affiliated politicians despite Jubilee being one of the key members in the Azimio coalition.

“The talks were never meant to succeed. Appointing a Jubilee or Azimio member to be part of the Kenya Kwanza team in negotiations was actually to spite the entire process. These guys had no good faith. They never intended to do it… they were looking for an excuse to reduce the steam from Maandamano and I want to assure them that next week May 2, we’ll be there,” Jubilee Vice Chair David Murathe was quoted in media.

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