Kenya’s government is set to meet today with the opposition party, Azimio la Ujoma. The sides meet in response to
Kenya’s government is set to meet today with the opposition party, Azimio la Ujoma.
The sides meet in response to protests over increased living costs and a tax hike. So far, scheduling conflicts and disagreements between Azimio leader Raila Odinga and Kenyan President William Ruto have delayed discussions.
Critics have spoken out against President Ruto’s decision to raise taxes on petroleum products as well as his decision to lift subsidies on maize flour. The subsequent rise in transport costs and food prices has been seen as a betrayal by many who believed that Ruto would address poverty and high living costs. According to rights groups, including Amnesty International, police confronted protesters with force, resulting in the deaths of 30 people.
Ruto’s reluctance to meet with Azimio is tied to concerns that talks could potentially strengthen the opposition party and upset key constituents ahead of elections in 2027. Although Azimio has claimed that they are not interested in a power-sharing deal with the government, Odinga could use today’s talks as an opportunity to improve his reputation. Ultimately, the meeting is likely to result in a brief lull in protests before demonstrations ramp up again as living costs remain high and neither side appears willing to back down.