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Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Why Was Raila Odinga Thrown Out Of A Nyeri Hotel?


Presidential hopeful Raila Odinga was in Nyeri yesterday for the funeral of an LDP official in the district. Two memorable incidents took place.

Firstly here was a skirmish at the funeral when a local in the area was interrupted by rowdy youths as he tried to criticize President Kibaki's administration. Things were so serious that the "speech" had to be cut short. It is not clear why details of this incident are so scanty in the local media.

But there was more drama to follow when Raila was ejected from a Nyeri Hotel because the "owner wanted nothing to do with ODM."

Both these incidents display the height of political immaturity in the country, although critics would be quick to point out that anybody critical of Raila Odinga would face more or less the same treatment in Kisumu, the bedrock of this presidential candidate's support.

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derek said...

What you do unto other will obviously be done unto you. The good book says. ‘Malipo ni hapa duniani’. And the coastals will tell you ‘Mkuki kwa binadamu ni sumu, lakini kwa samaki ni sawa’.

Is this the same man whose mob threatened Ndura Waruinge not to set foot in his ‘turf’? Is this the same man whose nyundo symbol brought Stephen Kalonzo Musyoka to the size of a mouse? This is the same man used by Kanu to stop James Orengo from travelling to Ugenya and sit under a tree in a neighbouring costintuency. Oh yes, this is the same man whose supporters threatened Stanley Livondo and even Nazlin Umar, a fellow presidential candidate dreamer from addressing supporters in Kisumu.

Anyway, I think if you look inside the hotel in Nyeri, there is a place written in white that ‘The management reserves the right of admission’ or ‘any uncustomerly behaviour will not be tolerated’.

In real sense, this was a poor one. It is yet another low in the political front and whoever advised Jimmy Kibaki’s mother-in-law should be ashamed. The mother-in-law should know what such a move means in politics, custom and even public relations.

Not to Raila Odinga and not to any other person. What has been achieved is little, and in any case, bringing such an honourable man, an MP in this case, irrespective of whether your daughter is married to the president son, down should not happen to someone whose input in the lives of Kenyans is appreciated.

Politics aside, the mother-in-law and the father-in-law of the daughter owe me an apology.

But this is a family of shame and shame and shame. One walks into a police station in a pyjama, holds journalists at ransom in a skirt-short and t-shirt, another one calls people pumbavu, another one orchestrates Armenians to raid a media house and now this. Runs in the blood!!

gitura said...

Derek I think sometimes you are out of your minds. You and Vikii make my fingers itch to log into Kumekucha everyday. My wife thinks that you are a daring or a mad man. I think you are both. You and Vikii write things that even brave people in kenya cannot write about Raila and now you are tying feet of the president family What have you written? Did you see Lucy Kibaki in a skirt-short or pajama

derek said...

Gitura you are madder than me! the degree varies. Does your wife run a hotel in Nyeri? Tell her that I will not visit it.

kalamari said...

Christopher, is it possible that this thing was more about pro-Kibaki/anti-ODM sentiments rather than anti-Luo animosity? If let’s say Balala led the prominent entourage and Raila was absolutely nowhere in sight, is it possible that they’d still be kicked out of a hotel owned by a Kibaki relative in Kibakis’ home turf?

Either way, why is it that when a hate crime is unleashed on Raila, he always comes out winning and is never diminished? This chap was laughing all the way from Mathira to his house in Karen, leaving you and I in fist-fight debates. My friends, this is what we call strategic product position in politics. (1) The very few pro-ODM Kikuyu voters (decided voters) are now more energized to vote for Raila. They loathe associating with such blatant hate and fear. (2) The undecided voters (usually more educated) are now contemplating if this is the Kikuyu heritage they want to leave behind for their children. They are concerned that what transpired, even though a single person’s decision, could be used to legitimize the perceived country wide anti-Kikuyu bashing. They want change, however, as they are ‘safe and comfortable’ under Kibaki, they are still unwilling/unsure to cash that Raila check. (3) Of course, then there’s the die-hard staunch anti-ODM chaps. With these chaps, Raila should not waste his time addressing.
Of the three groups of voters, the most important to Raila are the undecided voters. By positioning himself as a good-man-treated-badly-in-your-house, he reaches out to these chaps. It is this group that Raila was targeting when he made the decision to stop by at that roadside kiosk knowing very well the cook-cum-owner will surely chase him out with a mwiko. Sympathy votes. Politics. I love this game!!

luke said...

Chris nice to see that usual programming has resumed right on schedule, and not a moment too soon, with T-123 days and counting...
Indeed Bwanas Derek & Kalamari have set the ball rolling (Derek, uko na fan club siku hizi?hata hiyo ni economy jo, hongera ndugu)and the beautiful game is in motion-step aside Premier League football;politics is the name of the game

Intolerance disguised as legitimately exercised private property ownership rights was on display yesterday in the case of Raila vs Karatina Hotel inc. let me ask you this; if what happened yesterday was acceptable, why couldn't Mrs.Kibaki have been forcibly removed from Nation Media Group offices 2 years ago?those same private property ownership rights should have been exercised or do you mean to tell me that there are some animals that are more equal than others?

The spade has been called the spade, and i rest my case like Justice Bosire rested the Goldenberg tribunal nolle prosequi

vikii said...

My name is Vikii.I will start by saying that I hate primitivity of any kind and I mean it. The Karatina incidence is regrettable. There is no doubt about it. I am told the government, Opposition chief Uhuru Kenyatta and Kalonzo Musyoka have condemned that babaric act. They had a duty to do that.

That said, I will ask the same fundamental questions that Derek has asked here.Why is this becoming an issue now when Raila Odinga is the victim? Fine, that kind of behaviour is unacceptable, but are you people telling us you are seeing that primitivity for the first time? Raila Odinga and his bunch of ever hooliganistic supporters were always intimidating Jimmy Orengo with these little schemes. In 2005, Raphael Tuju couldnt access his own constituency due to these brainless goons. A couple months ago koigi Wamwere's tour of Kibera was forcefully stopped. Hooligans shouted down Kalonzo Musyoka in Mombasa the other day. They also tried to extend that amateurish behaviour to Ndura Waruinge. Had it not been for the government's intervention in reigning in Waruinge, the story would be different today. Why were all these incidences not condemned by the Kumekuchas of this world? What is so special with Raila Odinga being evicted from the restaurant?

People have to grow up. That is not negotiable. Such acts take us a hundred years back. But I am still convinced that you cannot play by the rules when your opponent has neither respect for nor understanding of those rules. In my opinion, stupidity should at times be met with stupidity, immaturity with immaturity and primitivity with primitivity. Being civil when dealing with some people is useless. Crooks who cannot even have respect for the president when he tours their area even on official duty have absolutely no moral authority to question yesterday's incidence. Michael wamalwa was a very refined and educated man, BUT he understood perfectly well the way to handle fools--Act foolish too.

Taabu said...

Sometime contemplating counterfactual scenarios is damn scarry. Just reverse the roles and place the foot firmly in the other boot - replace ALIAR (read in the reverse) with Emilio. The consequences although hypothetical are really juicy.

A wrong is a wrong is a wrong. But that said, you inadvertently invite calamity by sharpening the very spear only to taste its blades yourself. Politics is no game because games have rules (yes even romance is a game with rules). With siasa its only a venture of the possible leaving tears and joy in your wake with equal measure.

Two wrongs never made a right. Reducing a business into a cheer squad hqs is the height of immaturity. And we have the termirity to redicule the court jesters of Moi error. If only they had blogs siku hizo then Toro would remain man of the people. But alas, we now wax objective and progressive defending the primitive.

NB: Bw Gitura, please leave Vikii and Derek alone. They hate their head being mere appendages resting on their shoulders. They both exploit what lies in between their ears and when you cannot stand them learn to skip their posts becasue I can swear by my tomorrow's lunch they they won't stop. E-cop won't allow you the leverage to play fake psychiatrist in branding them mad. By the way wazimu husema wengine ndio wazimu, ama?

David Mwangi said...

That incident was regretable and I would add primitive for Mrs. Weru to kick the Raila & co. out of her restaurant. Though Mrs. Weru may have legal right to kick them out, me thinks her actions were uncivil and morally bankrupt.

To those at height of condemning this incident, I wish they could condemn all un-civil incidents (like Koigi & Waruinge being violently evicted from Kibera or Tuju and Orengo being physically harassed by Raila goons) with the same temerity like they are doing in this case. That way, we will know that their character is uncompromised by politics and ethnicity.

Proud Kikuyu Woman said...

I am a very Un-PKW.

Msapere halisi said...

What happened is that raila's team were politely told that the restaurant did not have fish in their menu , but the media had to get a spin out of this.

derek said...

Gitura, I heard one satirical line, and it was recently repeated by a columnist in the dailies. That, Moi, (yes, Daniel) once paid a visit to that institution opposite Muthaiga Police, yes, that one. Then this man approached him and asked him, ‘Hey, which one do you have? You mean all these policemen have brought you here? Sorry, I was brought by only two cop in one car’ Moi replied that he was the president. Then the bloke told him ‘Usijali, hata mimi nililetwa hapa, nilikuwa najiita Kenyatta. Utazoea’. Gitura, thanks for the complements, but thank you again. I hope I don’t bore you.

Anonymous said...


These are sad days for Kenya. For how long are we going to witness these tit-for-tat theatrics? When these tactics are then used when running a government, as happened in MO1's error, then we know we have a cancer that requires urgent operation.

Calls by leaders to their supporters not to retaliate on this action are welcome, but are indicators of how polarised our politics has become.

My question is this: Whether it will be MK or RO or KM, what will be the difference? My answer is that it will be business as usual. Otherwise i need someone to give me an itemised list of things that any one of them will do differently, then maybe i can consider voting for them. Please don't quote the "visions". I assure you they mean nothing even to the authors!

What Kenya needs is a complete overhaul of the current(independence) political class, the only sure way of transforming our country from the tribal balcanisation to nationalism. Replacing KM with RO or KM WILL NOT achieve this. It will just be a continuation of the "it-is-our-time-to-eat" mentality. Poor Kenya.


Phil said...

Chris, I havent heard about any skirmishes that reportedly took place at the funeral. Even the article in the standard (that you have provided a link) does not mention anything like that.

Are you sure about that? I was talking to someone who was at the funeral and they dont remember seeing any skirmishes, if anything residents came out in large numbers to witness the funeral and listen to Raila's speech. A 'normal' funeral does not attract such a crowd that attended this one. The man on the ground in central province does not have a problem with a fellow Kenyan on the ground in other regions. Thats what I gather even in social places here in Nairobi. Perhaps you are inadvertently or intentionally trying to fan fire that is already a volatile relationship between tribes, just like our insecure MPs?

As regards the whole Karatina hotel saga, I think we have spoken enough about tribalism in this blog. Everyone has a different opinion about how to tackle this menace, because they first and formost think about their tribes! Maybe a majimbo (federal) system of government is what we need!

vikii said...

People in central Kenya going to funerals to listen to a politician? I beg to differ my friend. It is not done that way in that side of town. Maybe you are talking about Nyanza or western but do I say?

Phil said...

It doesnt normally happen there, I know, but it happened when Raila was there. Eyewitness account. These people, you must remember, are also eager to join other Kenyans in reforming their country. By having two presidents from central province has not helped majority of the peasants. Just a few individuals at the top, who care less about the people on the ground. They were virtually imprisoned during the referendum days, and it is our feeling in ODM that they dont wish to be imprisoned again, having a president locally notwithstanding!

vikii said...

So the people told your eye witness " We are going to the funeral to listen to Raila"? I may be wrong but in my opinion the kikuyu culture is much more advanced than this.

Taabu said...

Hey brother Vikii please just read your two previous posts and make an HONEST and UNBIASED INFERENCE. What do you get? Are you accusing others by insinuation? If so then it is more of overt innuendo than covert cynism. Starting to think of 'us' as more advanced than 'them' plants the seed of hatred and latent genocide. I hope taking your post out of context will not be the excuse/refuge, ama? Over to you bro.

Q said...

There is no such thing as advanced culture, when culture changes it becomes lost, for culture is just but a state of mind.
Imagine if all masai morans stopped wearing their shukas and opted for jeans and t-shirts, would you say they have advanced their culture ?

Unless ofcourse you were refering to a colony of bacteria or other microorganisms growing in a nutrient medium in a laboratory Petri dish.

I think the Karatina incident wouldn't have been that bad if say, Raila and his group were chased from a political rally etc, but to chase someone from a eating place, is not only babaric, but also stingy and mean,imagine having such a mother-in-law. You would have to carry your own food when visiting her !

Maish said...

It just show women are short sighted and unreasonable. I have dealt with women and i can assure you that it's difficult. Am sure if the owner was a man he could have reasonedwith those people & avoid the ugly incident.

This shows Kenyan women are yet to mature politically & the talk about gender imbalance is all bullcrap.

Phil said...

Thanks mwalimu taabu, thats why I didnt respond to Vikii. This country needs more than prayers and a revolution will help us.

I hope Chris will provide details of the skirmishes and tell us just how Raila was forced to cut short his speech. From what I get, those villagers wanted more from Raila.

chris said...

Hi Phil,

For a moment there I thought I had goofed. But nope, its' accurate.

Read the article carefully.

It is NOT Raila who was giving the anti-government speech but an unidentified local who was booed by rowdy youths and forced to cut short his speech.


Taabu said...

No no Bw Maish, you cannot generalize and basterdize the female folks like that. Not in this era and age. You may have worked with the conservative lot which is not representative of our sisters. Show me an immature lady and I will deliver a score of scoundrels in trousers. Your stereotyping couldn't escape the e-cop, stop it and stick to the issue.

Vikii said...

My unreserved apologies to y'all and especially Phil. I have re-read my posts as advised by Taabu and being the honest person I consider myself to be, I found it offensive to the western brothers.

When Taabu says 'us' are better than 'them' then that doesnt apply to me because I am not kikuyu. Only fools do not see mistakes they make. I apologize to anyone who feels offended by those articles and I am actually very embarassed by them. There is nothing like an advanced culture, I agree. I consider it very primitive when people politik in funerals but I should not have despised a culture because of that.

Once again gentlemen I am sorry.

Sue said...

Maish when you generalise women on this issue by saying we are short sighted and unreasonable. You also imply that your mother, sister, aunts and grandmothers are also in this group.

You should know that women like me condemn this primitive act and that there are mature women in politics than men out here.

What do you say about the problems we face in Kenya and Africa mainly run by men.

Dont you think it could have been different with more women leaders.

Phil said...

Chris, Ive read the article again.

Unless we are reading different scripts, there's no such thing as booing or anyone being forced to cut short their speeches.

No problem Vikii, sometimes we all get carried away.

Manu said...

To me this shows how ethinicity is still prevailing our country at such an error when we are sopposed to be thinking much further than self centreship. The lady (hotel owner) has got very unguided thoughts that she has to change certainly or else will remain in this agony of ethinicity indefinately.

Anonymous said...

hi guys,
this has been a very interesting read...Thanks for people who are able to use their rational mind to rather tahn their emotions to put things into perspective. We are all Kenyans and we love our country..why do we want to always point out things that bring division and hatred rather than things that unite us and that are positive? When shit hits the fan, the less fortunate in our country ae the one who suffer despite their tribe or political association. They are our people and Kenya is our country..ama?

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