Western Kenya is Raila Odinga’s stronghold. The region teems with Raila supporters. I don’t think Moses Wetang’ula and Musalia Mudavadi have any strong grip on their strongholds. Raila has penetrated and succeeded in positioning himself as the kingmaker of the whole of Western Kenya, even in the presence of the two NASA co-principals.
For instance, Wetang’ula is politically frail, even in his own Bukusu sub-tribe. I don’t think Wetang’ula has significant influence in his Bukusu community. He has no firm grip to threaten Raila’s political standing in the region. Both Wetang’ula and Musalia are castigating Raila for having betrayed them by signing a unity agreement with President Uhuru Kenyatta and traversing Western Kenya whipping out the tribal card.
One thing they have quickly forgotten is that they have also been accused of betraying Raila on January 30, when they were a no-show during his swearing-in as the ‘People’s President’ in Uhuru Park.
The two, plus Kalonzo Musyoka, have not been forgiven by the NASA supporters for failing to attend the swearing-in ceremony.
It is clear that after the swearing-in, Kalonzo, Musalia and Wetangula’s positions in NASA were badly wounded. They have been unable to give convincing reasons why they skipped the swearing and thus lost supporters’ trust and confidence. People tend to build trust and confidence in people and if the three principals were really true to the cause then they would have turned up for the swearing-in.
We have seen the three principals being challenged to call a rally at Uhuru Park without Raila and they have failed to do so. If they really want to test their strength, why not call a rally? If I were them I would take up the challenge and call a rally at Uhuru Park.
It is obvious that the influence the three leaders had prior to the swearing-in has faded away. Supporters look at them as cowards and political hypocrites.
These tags that they have earned themselves will be permanent political scars. When you go through Western Kenya and Luo Nyanza, people are excited after Raila and Uhuru openly shook hands at Harambee House. The Luyhas and the Luos and even the Kambas are so excited. Perhaps Deputy President William Ruto needs to rework his political strategy if he really wants to buttress his 2022 presidential bid.