Has Uhuru-Raila handshake killed the Opposition?


President Uhuru Kenyatta and NASA leader Raila Odinga after a meeting at Harambee House on ...
President Uhuru Kenyatta and NASA leader Raila Odinga after a meeting at Harambee House on Friday, March 9, 2018. PHOTO| PSCU

In Summary

  • Already former Prime Minister Raila Odinga has declared his vacation from the 2022 succession politics following his appointment as AU’s special envoy on Infrastructure Development.
  • Raila was Jubilee’s fiercest critic during President Kenyatta’s first term in office but with the handshake, the building of bridges initiative and the recent continental appointment, President Kenyatta is expected to have an easy ride in his final term.
  • Critics say this could be counterproductive for the country, an assertion, a section of NASA legislators disagree with.

The handshake gift appears to have been extended to Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka following his international appointment.

But now questions are beginning to emerge, Is Kenya headed for another government of national unity?

What is Raila Odinga and Kalonzo Musyoka’s game plan for 2022 and will the man from Tseikuru brace the storm that appears to be gaining momentum following his recent pronouncements?

A debate that is gaining momentum following Kalonzo Musyoka’s appointment as the new head of the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (JMEC) on peace in South Sudan.

It all began during the burial ceremony of his father on Saturday in Tseikuru, Kitui County when the former Vice President was the first to give a hint about his future.

“I have made big pronouncements here today and these are the pronouncements that will help me at my age now. I can’t afford to play karata with politics,” said Kalonzo Musyoka.

“Our brother Kalonzo Musyoka will also help us elsewhere to foster peace and bilateral trade relations with other nations,” said Uhuru Kenyatta.

President Uhuru Kenyatta’s words giving out the secret on Kalonzo’s new role in South Sudan and later the surfacing of pictures of Kalonzo in South Sudan together with Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Monica Juma only rubber-stamping the appointment.

But the appointment appears to be a litmus test for Kalonzo Musyoka’s grip on Ukambani with critics  already emerging, most of them his political allies.

“Everyone has began the race and after running for like 2,500 metres we are seeing Kalonzo Musyoka moving in the opposite direction,” said former Machakos Senator Muthama.

“There’s no bigger campaign than that….that one endears him to Kenyans because there are Kenyans who work in Southern Sudan,” “said Daniel Maanzo, MP Makueni.

“By them getting those appointments, it gives them time to rejuvenate and when time for campaigns comes, they will resign and vie,” said Chris Wamalwa, Deputy Minority Whip.

“Anyone who is thinking that with this recent appointments that with these appointments that out two leaders will not play a bigger role…. I think that person is misguided,” noted Godfrey Osots, Nominated MP.

Already former Prime Minister Raila Odinga has declared his vacation from the 2022 succession politics following his appointment as AU’s special envoy on Infrastructure Development.

In a statement signed by his spokesman on the 5th of November, Odinga said in part, “to provide the required leadership in this critical area, and in line with his previous pronouncements, Odinga wishes to reiterate that he will not engage in Kenya’s succession politics ahead of 2022.”

Raila was Jubilee’s fiercest critic during President Kenyatta’s first term in office but with the handshake, the building of bridges initiative and the recent continental appointment, President Kenyatta is expected to have an easy ride in his final term.

Critics say this could be counterproductive for the country, an assertion, a section of NASA legislators disagree with.

“We are only cooperating on matters that are of public good….but where are issues that affect the common mwananchi….we are there to point out,” said Kimilili MP Chris Wamalwa.

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Story By Enock Sikolia
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