Francis Atwoli Secretary General COTU Kenya

The Central Organisation of Trade Unions, COTU (K) appeals to our politicians lead particularly by the His Excellency The President Uhuru Kenyatta who has at his disposal as our President every administrative machinery to deal with any situation that threatens our National Security. He should not remind Kenyans of what happened in the 2007/2008 post – election violence at a time when Kenyans are now united and praying for peaceful 2017 elections.

The pain, sting and agony that innocent Kenyans went through in 2007/2008 as a result of a disputed election should never be revisited in attempts to woo voters since these wounds are still fresh and any slight provocation will easily plunge this country into turmoil and the recipients of such are women, children and workers.

His Excellency The President should remember himself going out of his way during the violence to appeal to his people not to evict other communities from Limuru tea and coffee Plantations as the effect of the violence was so painful  to the workers with those who lost their jobs then remain jobless to date since they have not been able to be employed elsewhere.

This was a painful encounter to all Kenyans and sad that the very politics that caused the violence is again laying its ugly head where our politicians are igniting the memories in the minds of the many victims of the violence.

For instance, COTU (K)’s largest affiliate Trade Union, the Kenya Plantation and Agricultural Workers Union, KPAWU lost its shopsteward and  his entire family in one of the flower farms in Naivasha, a town that witnessed people being slaughtered  with majority of the victims being workers, women and children.

Indeed this prompted COTU (K) to be directly involved in the peace initiative where on 18th Jnaury, 2008 its entire Executive Board met the then President Mwai kibaki together with Amb. Francis Muthaura at  State House Nairobi in the morning and later in the afternoon held talks with Hons. Raila Odinga, Musalia Mudavadi among others at Pentagon House calling upon both parties to put Kenya first and enter into a power-sharing agreement.

Eventually, the then African Union Chairman and Ghanaian President John Kuffour came in before the appointment of the African eminent personalities who equally delivered the same message on a power-sharing and as a witness to this painful political violence, COTU (K demands that our politicians exercise caution and evaluate all that they say in public rallies because they are the individuals that left the country bleeding after the 2007/2008 elections and nobody can blame nor absolve the other since none of them is clean and we remain guilty as a nation because we lost lives that we shouldn’t have lost!

Let political leaders both in government and opposition keep their loud mouths shut and allow Kenyans to continue praying for peace and this informs the decision made by COTU (K) Executive Board that this year’s International Labour Day theme will be:

“Workers, Women, Children and other vulnerable Kenyans appeal for peaceful and democratic Elections”

being specifically singled out  by COTU (K) Executive Board  to remind our politicians , leaders and Kenyans that Kenya requires peaceful elections and we should not be reminded at this point in time on issues of the Haque and who did what because we are now past that and praying and looking forward to an election that will be democratic, fare and fair as well as one that will leave all Kenyans even more united.


Francis Atwoli,NOM(DZA),EBS,MBS



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