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Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Raila Odinga's World Cup Ad

Agwambo announces his presidential bid to the world

It came as a total shock. We were settling in to watch a World Cup game and opted to use one of the DSTV channels, there, immaculately dressed in orange was Agwambo himself in a flashy TV ad.

There was a hint of tears in his eyes which had more to do with the bright lights rather than emotion. He boldly announced that he is a pan-africanist and took the opportunity to congratulate all African countries that were participating in the World Cup. The ad ends with the Raila presidential bid web site advertised ( Interestingly there is nothing on this site except a few photos and empty pages. Why is raila promoting an empty website?).

In another version Raila is dancing with some traditional dancers wearing the same orange outfit and dances rather elegantly with his shoulders, he then announces that he wants to stand for president of "the republic of Kenya" in 2007. Loud cheers are heard as the address of the web site for his presidential bid comes on screen again.

I was even more shocked that no major media house in Kenya had picked up this significant event. For better or for worse Raila Odinga is definitely going to be one of the presidential candidates in 2007.

Before I analyze what impact this is going to have let me remind readers once again that I am a staunch ODM supporter and that my personal opinion is that Raila would make a great president. Just look at his organizational abilities to get a hint. However emotions and wishful thinking must always be separated from the reality on the ground for anybody in politics, especially those analyzing it.

The clever thing to do is to coldly analyze the reality on the ground and then go out and create your strategy. Blind loyalty and emotions will get you absolutely nowhere in politics.

Picture a situation where President Kibaki is standing against Raila Odinga as the main opposition candidate. This situation will neatly emerge before your eyes very quickly because most of Kanu will go with Moi and you would have to be more than blind not to see that an alliance has already been formed between Kibaki and Moi for 2007. At least one other major presidential candidate will be talked into giving up their ambition in return for a guaranteed vice presidential slot in President Kibaki's second term administration.

ODM will re-group. It will not be as powerful as before but it still has a huge following countrywide, although not big enough to win the presidency decisively.

These are the two men most likely to face off in 2007 as the main contenders. You may like Kalonzo or Ngilu or Uhuru, but like the Americans found out in the gruelling 2004 Presidential race, it is not who you like but who you prefer. The problem is that this will further split the country right down the middle and Mr Daniel Arap Moi, as chief Kibaki strategist will make sure that it is an ugly tribal affair. So who would you prefer for President, Raila or Kibaki? Sorry non-of-the-above will not be one of the choices open to voters.

In fact with Raila as the main candidate for the presidency, everything changes. Tribalism is bound to rear its' ugly head once more. (Read the post I made last week)

This will suit President Mwai Kibaki's plans perfectly because whenever the tribal demons come out, the Kikuyu have been known to quickly close ranks and blindly support their man (with their education, degrees and all one would have thought they would have known better. But then the demon of tribalism has scant respect for a persons' intelligence or educational background). Remember the November constitutional referendum?

Other major presidential candidates will quickly fizzle out when this scenario develops and even if they insist on standing, they will not be contenders. Thanks mainly to the recent work of former President Moi, the country will be divided along tribal lines. It is absolutely hypocritical how the former president can accuse Raila of fanning tribalism or playing tribal politics when that is exactly Moi's speciality. Did you see the speech he recently made to members of the Kalenjin tribe about what he called mass sackings of Kalenjins when he came out of power? And how the Kalenjin politicians did nothing? If this is not fanning tribal animosity and tribalism I don't know what it is.

Moi's politics is telling each tribe why they should not vote for the tribe opposing him. So in 2007 you are going to hear a lot of anti-Luo statements, which is okay except that it will work in getting votes away from Raila and to the Kibaki/Moi camp. Moi's strategy is going to be simple (I'm ready to bet a week's lunch that he will be the chief strategist of the Kibaki camp). He's going to tell the Kikuyu, (nay, remind the Kikuyu) why a Luo presidency would spell disaster for the nation.

The advantage that Raila has on his side is that there is time. Time enough to create a counter strategy to ensure that the anti-Luo sentiment does not take off from the ground, let alone fly. I actually present one such strategy in the next post that will actually make Raila unbeatable in 2007.
Other Raila Odinga Articles In This Blog;

Raila Phobia: Why The Emotional Comments And Abusive Language?

Raila Odinga’s World Cup Ad

What Raila Should Do To Win The Presidency

Is ODM Finished?

'82 Coup Plot Revelations: Raila Odinga's Biggest Political Mistake Ever


bankelele said...

The weekend score after Raila's ad would have beeen 10 - 0 when compared to Kibaki's family speech on Sunday evening. But advertising only an empty website leaves the score at 1 - 0.

Anonymous said...

raila is great politician - but presidentially he reminds me of
mugabe,chavez,castro i fear for a raila presidency

Amkeni wakenya! said...

WE are all waiting for Raila to put something in his site hata kama ni recent pictures those look za kitambo.

Anonymous said...

Hey everyone, go check again. They must have changed their web design company...the new site kicks @ss!!!

Anonymous said...

dear editor,

your comments that Moi is powerful in KANU is misquided, if you analyze critically kenyans will clearly vote as per referendum. if you think moi has followers in Rift valley you will be extremely shocked.

most of us will not vote for quys who cant hold coalitions together and Railas entry is very perfect especially that he enjoys a huge following in grass roots.

if you believe that appointments that were made are not influencing matters please think twice>

Chris said...

I'm not bragging but I'm a veteran of following the last 3 elections very closely. I know where the votes are and I can tell you they're not in the city where me and you are.

Still I'm always ready to learn, we all make mistakes. Time is usually the best the best judge. So far I've been proved right most times BUT THIS TIME I sincerely will be delighted if I'm proved wrong and a new geenration of Kenyans take over power. This is the best thing for the country right now.

Anonymous said...

The one thing that keeps on coming up is that Raila is a good politician but would be a bad President....Can someone please explain...what is it that he would do?

Anonymous said...

I was really psyked to read your article until I reached the part where you think Raila would make a good what???? PRESIDENT? The man is a walking & talking distaster. Can you tell me what he did during his stint as a Minister? He ran around making roadside comments instead of working. He went to Malaysia, came back and did not even once comment on the great infrastructure he saw there? (Fine Mbagathi is being made out of cement malaysian influence; but that has always been in the pipeline). Did he put forth any other great workable plans? NO!

I think to be accepted as a Presidential candidate you should present a resume stating what one has done and where you've succeeded. Currently, Raila has done us a great favor but causing havoc everywhere he has been instead of sitting down and actually doing something tangible for the nation. A great activist, a great politian but a great President? Knowing him, he would be at a loss over who to blame for shortcomings as a sitting President.

Anonymous said...

Raila is advertising during all games involving an African team. Seems to be doing it thro’ an ad agency.

Am glad you stopped writing him off. Let’s face it, this guy outsmarted MOI at the end of it. Were it not for him, NARC would not be in power today. He has already gone into our history books whether he ever becomes President is now irrelevant. As I keep answering his detractors – “show me a politician who is not greedy for power (ambitious) and I will show you a cat that detests milk”.

I feel glad that I can appreciate a politician so far away from my tribe, (oops, sorry community.)

A true Kenyan I am.

Anonymous said...

The isssue about Raila not making a good president is an obsolete idea.How come we trust and beleive in the candidates he creates and backs yet we say we don't beleive in his candidature.Raila has made many and it is time for the maker to vie.Are you afraid of loosing him from the oposition because his absence is quite imence and the gap he leaves cannot be filled, so he is the best option in terms of maintaining daring government checks? Lets give him a chance before he becomes Kibaki's age.
Ministers perfomance is also difficult to measure especialy if you only stay for less that 5 years. What did Musyoka, Ruto,Mudavadi, Mwiraria,Murungaru,Murungi, Saitoti, Kibaki and Moi achieve as ministers of state?
So who do you prefer?

Anonymous said...

You are right about tribalism.It reached new heights when Kibaki took power;he managed to break the spirit of nationalism that had engulfed the country.His presidency is the strongest argument in favour of MAJIMBOISM.Why collect taxes nationwide and develop and promote only one province?KIBAKI MUST G0!!!!

nikithemags said...

Kibaki a tribalist??? I think we live in two different countries. And if you're from Nyanza I wouldn't be too quick to talk. The most venomous words have come from that region. Stones come from there. Intolerance and pride come from there. ANd not forgetting blind following eg. Ques- Umesoma? answ- Hapana, lakini Raila amesema! I feel sorry for a blind people with all their education and all. But do I say!

John Kay said...

Anonymous said...


With all due respect

The Swahili say, “Mgalla mume na haki umpe’.

I am not surprised that some people are so afraid, they would do anything to stop Raila. Brothers and Sisters, this man is unstoppable and if you didn’t know, he has a streak of luck that neither Kalonzo nor Kibaki has. He is set to win. The sooner we see it and accept it the better for us.

It is not just by coincidence that this man is the most feared in the eyes of Moi, Kibaki and cronies. Sometimes I am baffled when we close our eyes and try to forget that the greatest haters of Raila have stolen much much more from Kenyans and they have been investigated. Was there ever a commission of enquiry to investigate Raila? Eeeee, my mind is failing me! Can someone jog my memory? Maybe it is not a brain lapse after all, the man is just clean. It would be very easy to have him locked up by now if indeed he was corrupt as you have elaborately alleged. Hey, Relax! I am not saying that the man is not human, that he is impeccable; being a politician is not an easy thing as you might have seen from the councilor or the MP in your back yard. Politics is dirty, and politicians have lots of dirt around them. We have to start from acknowledging the fact that all our leaders are not angels, telling me to support Kibaki who was in government during Goldenberg and Anglo leasing, because Raila is a thief doesn’t make a point. Give me a good reason why I should not vote him in.

According to the Ndungu land report, three families in Kenya own land covering almost a quarter of the entire land space of Kenya. Kenyatta family alone owns land as big as Nyanza Province, but these are Kibaki’s closest allies, Moi who was telling me to support Kibaki the other day is………I need not say! It’s rather obvious. You know, when I voted Moi out, I meant out! Anything that points to the fact that he may be in is annoying me……… ggggrrrrrrrrrr! I mean out! And Kibaki has just been telling me that he somehow Moi is in. gggggggggrrrrrrrr! I meant out… and I am the voter here. If Moi cannot be out, then Kibaki might as well join him. Mark my words!

Now Back to Raila,

Firstly, we are discussing him here and not Kalonzo because we both know he is a threat to Kibaki! A real threat, despite all those allegations heaped up against him. If he was that bad, why are we circulating these mails against him? To inform voters? Some Caveat Emptor? Well, we wouldn’t even bother. Coz he would be very distasteful to speak about and his fate would be sealed by his own actions. He still moves on though. It means there are many other good things that people are seeing in him. In deed, as was rightly pointed out, he is the enigma in Kenyan politics.

Secondly, many of the gains we are enjoying in the name of democracy in the country is through the efforts of Raila. The little that Kibaki has managed to deliver is because Raila made him president. He was in a wheelchair during campaigns and Raila used his magic wand for Kibaki’s glory. As much as we wouldn’t want to accept it, let’s acknowledge that without Raila, Kenya would not be what it is today. Should we also blame him for this, for giving Kibaki power, for being loyal to Kibaki in his desperate time of need? For traversing the country convincing people to vote for Kibaki? For Kibaki’s lethal way of saying thank you? Let us not blame Raila for all these things. Give credit where it is due.

Thirdly, people say Raila is an oppositionist. Right now, even Kibaki is his own opposition in the NARC government that brought him into power. His record clearly beats Raila’s. This is something that Raila has never done. He has never been president and opposed his own party in government. If he were to do it, then he would probably take after Kibaki. Kibaki cannot say which party he shall use as a vehicle to presidency come Dec because he is an opposition member in his own NARC government. Soon, you will see that this is true because it is not NARC that Kibaki will use to steer him into government. Raila has constantly said, it is better to sacrifice a party than sacrifice ideologies. There have been sharp disagreements that led to Raila changing parties and this is his work tell you. I do not want to propagate hearsay, TAKE TIME AND LISTEN TO HIM. You will know why. There are people who allow themselves to be manipulated and Raila is not that type of person. He believes in himself and it is a very good thing. Should we hate him for that? Look at Kibaki with his hands free kind of leadership. It has brewed ethnicity in the country. You only need to see how appointments are made in government to know how. Kibaki is not in control. It is evident that there are people who are in control. Did you listen to Kirwa the other day telling some cronies of Kibaki to stop embarrassing them and to let them also campaign for Kibaki? Surely, in the event that I vote for Kibaki, will I really be voting in Kibaki or some few arrogant individuals that make me ggggrrrrrrr! He is not in control even of his own campaign. And then we want to lie to ourselves and say, he is a good leader, always keeping us guessing. He is simply not in control.

Raila has changed parties right, but look at some others who stay even when things are bad, they keep saying…we have been short changed! But they do nothing about it. Should we blame Raila for being the kind of person that you cannot easily short change? He doesn’t stomach it. And I believe this is a good character in leadership. We need African leaders who will stand up against western manipulation. Raila is just one of that kind.

Yes the Luo community has been marginalized because of Raila they say. If this is what Moi did and Kibaki is doing then clearly we should know that they are not the right leaders for this country. They are to blame for the poverty in Nyanza. Raila is the MP for Langata. Not anywhere in Nyanza. Condemning a whole community because of a leader from that particular community is a bad sign for democracy. We should resist this. Those who want to blame Raila for the poverty in Nyanza, you ought to know very well where the problem is. We may as well deal with the problem, and not Raila because he is not the problem. He doesn’t sit in any development committee in Nyanza. He is MP for Langata. Unlike some leaders on the Kibaki’s group, Moi and Uhuru Kenyatta notably, at least Raila has not made squatters of his own people. Fellow Kenyans, think! You know where the truth lies.

Those who are trying to say that Raila is brewing ethnicity are just desperate. They have nothing to say. Luos are not propagating tribalism and we all know it. Luos welcome all people. Go to Kisumu, Ugunja, Siaya, Mbita, Nyakach, Bondo, Alego, Gem etc and you will find all the 42 tribes represented either as spouses to Luos, businessmen or casual workers. Some people are trying to teach Kenyans bad things. When you throw out Raila from your business premises because of his tribe, you are telling Kenya how tribal you are and should we all act in the same way, then the Rwanda genocide would not be as serious. Clearly, we know where ethnicity looms largely in Kenya. A call to those who would not vote for Raila because of his tribe: please change! For the sake of your children and your children’s children. PLEASE CHANGE!

Those who want to say that Raila’s record as an MP is an epitome of failure, I advice you not to be so desperate, at least not in public. Langata Constituency is a large area and not just Kibera. Developing Kibera is an uphill task that requires synergy from all sectors. Only a fool would blame development in Kibera on Raila. In case you forgot, the success of an MP are not measured just on the constituency yard stick but also his participation in parliament. Raila has brought forth many statutory reforms, most notably, multi party democracy that we now enjoy. There are gains for Kibera, schools, lighting and he stands with his constituents for his constituents. In Kibera, landlords are very gentle with tenants. Maybe the other day your landlord threw you out. I’m sure you wished Raila could speak for you. For those who are misinformed, Raila cut out a deal with the landlords in Kibera and the slum dwellers got to pay half the rent that was imposed. Down from 1000 per month for those slum houses to 500/=. I think this is reasonable considering that the people in Kibera are the poorest of our society. Talk to the people in Kibera, their MP has done a lot for them. There are good schools, lighting and health facilities in Kibera. Those who speak ill of Kibera because of Raila, did you know that Kibera is a safe haven despite it being a slum. Make a point of visiting Kibera and see yourself the gains that Raila has for Kibera. One thing that you must note also is that there are NGO’s who are in business because of Kibera the way it is. Are NGO’s also doing nothing in Kibera. Should Kibera change, then many people would have no business agenda. What I am trying to say is that Development is Kibera is multi dimensional. Heaping it all on Raila is unfair. Compare you MP with Raila, who would you give more credit?

Someone said that Raila’s record includes failed campaigns for president, a failed coup an attempt to install a luo dictatorship on Kenyans.

Moi failed against Kenyatta, He changed parties from KANU to KADU. Kibaki failed against Moi, He changed Parties from KANU to DP. Moi failed to Kibaki and incase you forgot, Kibaki’s election into presidency was Raila’s win. Kibaki before he could ascending into presidency changed parties from KANU to DP to NAC to NARC to NARC-Kenya (before he was reminded it was illegal to officially move to NARC-Kenya) and now to…he cannot even decide.

P/S: The most successful people on earth have been failures. And failure is only a chance to begin more wisely. It is a good thing that Raila has failed once because good things don’t come easy and you appreciate winning after failing.

As for the coup, Raila would be dead according to law if he was involved. I was not yet born then, but I hear there was no evidence against him and nolle prosequie was entered. Today, I have grown up, I have a vote, I refuse to be cheated anymore. Can Kibaki give Kenyans what they have lost? Clearly this is not in his agenda? Some piecemeal development that reads negative on the human development index is not what I voted him in for. The other day he called backbenchers to state house and yesterday, they passed a government bill to bar any investigation by KACC on past looting. To protect who? Moi, Kibaki and a few other people. Not Kenyans. Law is enacted to protect society. Why we are spending money on KACC-to investigate economic crimes- clearly KIBAKI HAS NO WILL. Sorry if it hurts you, I believe Raila and sadly our generation is going to rule.


Bobby said...

"Raila's precidency must be taken with much seriousness".It has now dawned to the Kibaki regime and especially his tribal cabinet and his old school friends like akina Michuki,Munyao and all of his 'poor'and unpopular cabinet.Indeed they are campaining for the maintainance of the status quo.Young people are tired of the bad leadeship of the old 'WAZEE's they should pack and go Home.They have ruined the lives of the Kenyan young turks and i am afraid for the re-election of baba Jimmy.We are happy for railas candidature on the contrary to the selfish ambitons of the pnu members.

Anonymous said...


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