Deputy President William Ruto has criticized former Prime Minister Raila Odinga for likening his “hustler” narrative to Adolf Hitler’s National Socialism often referred to as Nazism, the ideology of the Nazi Party, which ruled Nazi Germany from 1933 to 1945.
The ODM leader made the remarks on Wednesday as he asked Members of Parliament not to criminalise Ruto’s hustler narrative but maintained that it is a dangerous slogan.
Responding to Raila on Wednesday evening Ruto said he disagreed with the former’s “very wrong understanding” of the hustler campaign.
“While agreeing fully with your defence of freedom of speech & thought as guaranteed by Constitution, we respectively disagree with your very wrong understanding of hustlers but will equally defend your thoughts. We will work tirelessly to get hustlers narrative positively understood,” the DP tweeted.
While AGREEING fully with your defence of FREEDOM of SPEECH&THOUGHT as guranteed by CONSTITUTION,we RESPECTFULLY DISAGREE with your very WRONG UNDERSTANDING of Hustlers BUT will equally defend your thoughts.We will work tirelessly to get Hustlers narrative positively understood. pic.twitter.com/V8w6tOOq34
— William Samoei Ruto, PhD (@WilliamsRuto) February 17, 2021
Raila had indicated, in a statement, that he had learned that the Parliament’s National Security Committee is planning to pass a bill that will criminalise the slogan, and impose hefty fines, jail time and even removal from office for any leader who propagates it.
” I would strongly appeal to members of parliament to drop any attempts to legislate against this otherwise deadly slogan. As a country, we fought for, and should respect free speech and association. We should be able to allow the Deputy President and his team to continue with their chosen slogan without any inhibitions,” stated Raila.
Issuing a warning that the slogan was a danger to the social fabric of Kenya, Raila urged “those who understand the dangers” to keep on educating Kenyans.
“…these ideologies caused a great deal of trauma to Germany and the world. They ended in the Holocaust. I fear the “hustlers vs dynasties” narrative will have the same deadly consequences for Kenya as Nazism did for Germany,” he added.
Ruto’s Tangatanga camp has been traversing the country selling the hustler narrative that they claim promotes a bottom-up economic model that will see citizens and small traders funded to build themselves if they form government in 2022.