I have no problem with constructive criticism. Most people think that I concede too easily and too quickly at the earliest sign that I have been proved wrong. If you ask me most people never want to be proved wrong and can argue for hours just to maintain appearances and an image of never being wrong. That is really sad because learning becomes almost impossible with such a kindergarten attitude.
Anyway I am writing this post to change my position on the ongoing Raila/Ruto war. Earlier I said that I believed that Ruto will go down first. Now I am writing to say that Raila will go down first.
I used history to write my last post and somebody challenged me with the same history to prove me wrong. I have dug deep into my history books and I have no option but to agree with them. I firmly believe that history always repeats itself; I have seen it happen too many times.
Let me give you the historical facts and arguments presented to me.
On 26th June 1958 Oginga Odinga (father to Raila Odinga) made his famous “Kenyatta tosha” move in parliament (Legco). He did this by doing what was then “unthinkable”. In a speech he later referred to as “his bombshell in the house” he said that those convicted in Kapenguria were “still the real political leaders” of Africans in Kenya. He singled out Jomo Kenyatta and compared him to Makarios, the then exiled leader of Cyprus. Makarios was a religious leader and it was obvious that Odinga was elevating Kenyatta to almost godly status. The colonial government did not mince any words and governor Sir Evelyn Baring made it clear that the government had no intention of allowing Kenyatta to return to active politics even if he were released. But the political impact on the ground was huge (just as Odinga had intended) and Raila’s dad had set in motion a chain of events that would give the presidency to Kenyatta on a silver platter.
It was clear what had motivated Odinga senior. It was his deep hatred for the much younger Luo called Tom Mboya who had outsmarted him at every turn. He could not stand the idea of watching the young upstart climb to power and loathed the idea so much that he preferred a Kikuyu to his own tribes-mate.
More importantly in retrospect, Odinga launched tribal politics in Kenya for the first time. He chose Kenyatta because Kenyatta was a Kikuyu and he knew that the bedrock of Mboya’s support in his Nairobi constituency were the Kikuyu. Odinga senior was to play this tribal card again and again in his political battles against Mboya who firmly remained a nationalist to the bitter end.
My critic says that Odinga seniors’ motivation was exactly the same as that of Raila in rejecting Uhuru Kenyatta as the presidential candidate for Kanu in 2002. Raila chose Mwai Kibaki not because he liked him but to frustrate the youngster Uhuru from ascending to the presidency. Like his dad he could not bear to see the youngster rise to power above him while he watched. Hence the “Kibaki tosha” statement that gave the presidency on a silver platter to the Kikuyu once again and this time round to one Mwai Kibaki.
Back to Odinga senior; the relationship with Kenyatta was warm and cordial at first and he was even appointed Kenya’s first Vice president. However Jaramogi Oginga Odinga quickly got disillusioned and frustrated by the Kenyatta administration of thieves who never saw any prime land they did not want to grab. The Kenyatta administration was quick to identify Odinga and the Luo community as a serious threat and many lives were saved and chaos averted because of this wisdom in Kenyatta and his close advisors.
Mwai Kibaki took a much longer time to realize that Raila was a threat after the initial honeymoon had ended. As late as a few months to the presidential elections of 2007 many Kibaki advisors were saying that Kenyans would never elect “an Luo Kihehe (uncircumcised)” to the presidency. This lack of foresight is what led to the chaos and blood shed that will be the Kibaki legacy long after he is gone.
Kenyatta identified Tom Mboya as the man he would use to neutralize the Odinga threat. Kibaki has identified Ruto as the man to use to neutralize the Raila threat to him and his administration. Mboya won and so will Ruto.
Jaramogi Oginga Odinga remained very powerful and influential amongst the Luo people but was powerless because he had been forced out of mainstream national politics. I now believe that exactly the same thing will happen with Raila. He will remain very influential in Luo Nyanza politics but will fade out of national politics.
Mboya was killed and elevated to cult status as a result of his death. I believe Ruto will be removed from the scene and end up in some prison cell which will elevate him to cult status amongst the Kalenjin. It is not too dfficult to imagine the Kalenjin talking about Ruto in the same awed tones as they still talk about their military hero and leader Koitalel arap Samoei. Ironically one of Ruto’s names is Samoei. Read all about this amazing Kalenjin secrets in my earlier post. Read This one first.
Away from history there are some telling pointers on the ground that point to a Raila downfall in the very near future.
For starters he has made the same mistake Mwai Kibaki made in 2005 in thinking that he would still win the referendum for a new constitution he had crafted with Wako, with the big landowners of Kenya on the opposing side. Have you ever wondered why the Kenyattas, Mois etc were so firmly against the new constitution (redrafted by Wako)? It was the simple matter of what that draft had to say about land policy and a truth and reconciliation commission. In simple language passing that new constitution in 2005 would have meant that the Kenyattas Mois etc would have ended up losing their vast tracts of land (and thus wealth).
If Raila sees the Mau evictions to their logical end, one of the biggest losers (apart from William Ruto himself) will be former president Daniel arap Moi and his sons. The Kenyattas are very worried because after Mau other parcels of land countrywide are sure to follow. While it is important for Kenya and Kenyans that Raila wins this gallant fight, the political reality is that he cannot. He is already a marked man. Give the powerful landowners of Kenya a few weeks and their money will have done its work and gathered enough votes in parliament to easily pass a vote of no confidence in the Prime Minister. But before that the president will appoint a new leader of government business in the house and Raila will no longer have the clout in the house to reject the appointment this time.
Folks ODM is dead and no matter what Steadman polls say, Raila is no longer the formidable national political figure he was in 2007. If you can’t hear what I am saying, then please try and read my lips ODM IS DEAD AND BURIED!!!