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Why Jubilee Must not Celebrate a Raila Odinga Candidature

While I have decided to stay clear of the NASA presidential candidate debate and by large the ongoing shambolic nominations and accompanying dramas, I must have heard many stories about these things. Some are pure mythical but we are happy with mythology. After all, what do we do with realities we understand not? But some of the narratives are outright lies. We must refuse to be comfortable with the latter if we are to be serious mortals. One of the loudest lies is that Raila Odinga is easy for Jubilee to beat and that Raila Odinga is a perennial loser. I have lost count of the number I have heard this in a span of just about 24 hours. 

But we can deconstruct this. Raila Odinga is not easy to beat. Both Kibaki Mwai and Kenyatta Uhuru who have met him in the ballot know this fact. Millions of Kenyans and other people from around the world know that fact too. There is sufficient literature on Raila Odinga, the politician and his political stature as well as the maniac political support the following that he enjoys and commands in this country. To believe that he is easy to beat is to choose to be lazy, a condition that many Kenyans suffer from anyway. Two. To believe that Raila Odinga is a perennial looser is a lie. Raila Odinga hardly loses any political contest. Whether it is the struggle for multi-party democracy, removal of Moi from power, constitutional plebiscites, name it.

Of course, some people will say Raila Odinga has always lost presidential elections. It is a lie. Raila Odinga has contested three elections and only lost one to Moi in 1997. In 2002 Raila joined Kibaki and they won an election. In fact, evidence seems to suggest that if it were not of Raila Odinga, Kibaki could not have become President of Kenya. As recent as last week Moody Awori, former Vice President, was providing some evidence in support of this theory. In 2007 Raila Odinga won an election clean and squire. Only an open air lunatic can dispute this. In 2013 Raila Odinga forced a run off. Evidence from the Supreme Court Petition, election monitoring reports, investigative and journalistic reports and documentaries, corporate and individual studies conducted on the subject is fast filling the literature gap on the matter. More and more we are getting to know what transpired in 2013. Interestingly, to date not even the IEBC has been able to contradict a claim that Uhuru Kenyatta got dubious 2 million votes! Again to choose to dispute this even with all the available evidence is to choose to be lazy, a condition that many Kenyans suffer from anyway.

My observation and submission therefore is that for Uhuru Kenyatta and Jubilee, Raila Odinga is nightmarish. I am sure that all intelligent Jubilee strategists know this simple fact. The only opportunity that Raila Odinga offers and which any Jubilee strategist will want to capitalize on is the so called "irrational phobia of Raila Odinga" prevalent in parts of central Kenya. And the political dividend that can accrue from this phobia for Jubilee is to remind the people in that part of the country that "if they do not rise and go vote, Raila will become president." That is enough to drive even the near death souls from their beds to go and cast their ballot on August 8. They won't be voting because they believe that Uhuru Kenyatta has done or can do a better job but to prevent Raila from becoming president because if he does, it is widely believed that, they will suffer from something really bad (never mind they know not what that something is!). So a Raila Odinga candidature certainly helps cure the voter apathy that we had started to witness in central Kenya.

However, all is not well for Jubilee since central alone cannot "tyrannize" the rest of Kenya with numbers; they need a Rift that is locked. But, without the ICC variable that worked wonders in 2013, the reaction in the Rift may not be expected to remain as it was then. Plus, only naivety may help one imagine that Isaac Ruto is moving alone to Raila Odinga's camp. He could move with 10 votes. Now, moving with 10 votes to Raila from a region that voted to the last man for Uhuru and Jubilee does not not mean something. If you are a Jubilee enthusiast who since yesterday has been celebrating and thinking about how you are going to beat Raila Odinga and NASA sitting, I invite you to think again.
Why Jubilee Must not Celebrate a Raila Odinga Candidature Why Jubilee Must not Celebrate a Raila Odinga Candidature Reviewed by Ibrahim Magara on April 28, 2017 Rating: 5

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