Long article alert!If you can’t read,go to hell!
WHERE THE RAIN BEATS ODM.
I don’t quite understand why time is proving me to be such an accurate political prophet.
There are many unpopular political predictions I started making way back in 2009 (following the Raila/ODM-Ruto/Kalenjin fall out),all through to the 2013 general elections and soon thereafter about our party ODM,its leadership and its political prospects and the party’s political shelf life generally.As we speak,nearly 70% of my unpopular predictions have seamlessly come to a pass-including our defeat at the 2013 polls,with the remaining 20%(10% being the margin of error), barring any miracle, looking imminent and likely to come to a pass as well after the next elections.
The issue here is how we in ODM transact our political businesses,handle our political issues both within and without ODM and how we deal with the subsequent political crises that inevitably arise from these.This has been our political waterloo where our party leader Raila Odinga has had 4 major enemies he ought to have decisively dealt with long time ago;
4)The busybodies and political brokers/misadvisors he keeps around him both at Orange House and at his Capitol Hill offices.
A commoner like myself would have expected Raila to have naturally learnt a lot from his 2007 presidency that never was ,the silly political mistakes committed thereafter and the consequent numbing defeat suffered at the hands of the two ICC criminal suspects in the 2013 general elections.Unfortunately, he never did,and is unlikely to ever do.
The reason I want to draw a parallel between the 2007/8/9 mistakes and the subsequent rebellion and their effects on the 2013 elections,and the crisis currently engulfing the ODM party ,is because this present Luhyia-Kisii disquiet in ODM is designed and is churning itself out more or less the same way as the 2008/9 Kalenjin disquiet complete with government support,with the only difference being that the 2008/9/10 rebellion by the Kalenjins was slightly more justifiable unlike the current one.
Also, this time round unlike the other one,Raila has so far managed to tame his sycophants against going for his antagonists’ jugular-which is a good thing hoping that it lasts.But where the Kalenjin rebellion of 2008/9/10 had justification(i.e Fruitless political battle, ICC,Mau Forest evictions etc),the current Luhyia-Kisii rebellion is compensating it with State sponsorship through cash crumbs from mega corruption in government and promises for “development” and shelter from Opposition cold,all these guised as dictatorship within ODM-something I cannot completely rule out.
At this juncture,allow me to digress into some bitter history that many of us in ODM would rather not remember:
By 2008/9,William Ruto had sharply disagreed with Raila over the latter’s decision to throw away their hard-earned 2007 political victory against PNU.
William Ruto,like many of us on that side at that time,could not fathom just how Raila readily agreed to give out our hard won political power to the then physically and politically dilapidated Mwai Kibaki on a silver platter under the guise of seeking for peace,national unity and cohesion.So instead of persevering through a few more days of bloodshed(many had already died anyway) to give us what we wanted, the captain caved in and opted for diplomacy and paper power which couldn’t satisfy many of us led by William Ruto,forget about even being a justification for the many who had already died or got displaced by that time.
Raila couldn’t just withstand the sight of blood. It’s even funny that the very people whose continued butchering and suffering he stood against in 2007/8 are the same ones who have today labelled and actually believe he’s a bloodthirsty vampire kind of politician who stands for nothing beyond anarchy and bloodbath just to acquire raw power.
Many of us who supported ODM and Raila’s presidency in 2007,were obviously very furious with him.Then ICC came and Raila and ODM refused to firmly and politically stand with his soldiers of 2007/8 namely William Ruto,Henry Kosgey and Joshua San’g.The key word here being politically! Kibaki did his part and politically stood with his.He even went ahead and adopted Raila’s/ODM’s orphaned soldiers for future political engagements.Then came the Mau Forest Evictions where the Mt.Kenya Mafia,under the guise of restoring Mau Forest, cleverly handed the paper Prime Minister a very long political rope to hang himself by giving him all the powers to oversee the Mau restoration, and the paper power-inebriated Prime Minister gladly grabbed the rope.
With the Kalenjins forcefully evicted from the infamous forest and their houses therein burnt,their children and women being rained on by the roadsides and sleeping in the cold and falling sick,with the safes containing the money that was to be used in resettling the evictees suddenly safely locked up at the Treasury under Uhuru Kenyatta and keys thrown across the apex of Mt.Kenya into the Mt.Kenya forest and with the Rift Valley politicians breathing fire under the Prime Minister’s neck,Agwambo wasn’t moved.
Raila swore to restore Mau irrespective of the political consequences. He was ready to retire and sell mandazi at Katwekera, my neighbourhood of Kibera,he said. What Raila didn’t know was that Mau and ICC were just but political balance sheets on which he was busy debiting his column and crediting the Mt.Kenya column. And though he suffered the heavy political consequences,the man is yet to come and start selling for me mandazis at Katwekera where I stay………..
Back to the current debate……
I was explaining the genesis of the Kalenjin rebellion against Raila and ODM and the justification as I saw it,and the ineptitude with which the ODM leadership solves ODM problems.So just like the Ruto-led rebellion of 2008/9,this current Ababu-led rebellion doesn’t need the kind of bellicose response we gave against Ruto and his people.
I remember Raila and his troupe of sycophants then shouting from the rooftops of how they were not interested in the Kalenjin leaders but the Kalenjin voters;that they would deal directly with the Kalenjin voters.Well,they went ahead and tried just that and the whole world knows what came out of it.I’m therefore not the kind that posses contempt for elected leaderships from other tribes.I advocate for total respect for other people’s leaders,no matter how weak they may appear.
I’m praying that the ODM leadership treads carefully even as they engage the people for disrespect is one of the reasons Ababu and Otuoma are fronting as the cause of their rebellion.The Luhyia-Kisii quiet rebellion against ODM,whether funded by the State or not,as Barrack Muluka rightly says,requires a tactful and diplomatic handling away from the public noises and chest thumping complete with shallow political rhetoric of “TIBIM” and the rest.This is not the time for insolence and belligerence. I hope ODM pulls it through…..