In my column this weekend Why Raila Is The Man For The Job, Not Uhuru, I make the case why:
The 2016 presidential race in the US pitted two opponents the country loathed equally, but had to choose one since the independent candidates stood no chance.
Hard to believe, even as these two candidates were so loathed, each had loyal supporters inseparable from them, such that Donald Trump boasted he could shoot someone on the streets of New York and not lose a single vote.
We have the same paradox in Kenya, where much as Raila Odinga is loved across the country, he has diehard critics who hate him. In the same vein, much as Uhuru Kenyatta has utterly failed as President, he has supporters who praise him, and cannot wait to hear he has rigged himself back to power.
It’s hard to know in concrete numbers how much support each has, and all the major pollsters are dismissed as bought and paid for, so their numbers don’t tell us much.
It’s clear, however, Jubilee is losing ground in a number of counties they were hoping to capture and that’s why they’ve been camping there. But their efforts have been met with great resistance, owing to the better job NASA has done reminding voters who’s responsible for their suffering.
That’s the case NASA is making.
Jubilee, on its part, keeps launching and relaunching old projects and pointing to them as their success stories, when they’re not busy siphoning to themselves and their cronies funds intended for these very initiatives. There’s another reason why the Tyranny of Numbers this time favours NASA and not UhuRuto besides the record they cannot defend, and that is NASA’s change message and, more specifically, its believable message of hope and change. The simple question is, who would 50%+1 of voters going to the poll on 8/8 believe?
The odds are it’ll be Raila, owing to one overriding reason — it is far more believable Raila and NASA can deliver on the things they say they want to do, than it is believing Uhuru because Jubilee have a record of failure against which they will be judged.
Rather, the task for both sides is to make sure as near to 100 per cent of their supporters get out and vote.
With people suffering from hunger and poverty, that task will be far much easier for NASA and, were that to be the case and the majority of those genuinely voting vote for Raila, Uhuru will be defeated. In this case, he should do the honourable thing and accept the verdict of the people and join the following leaders in Africa, who lost and stepped down:
President John Mahama of Ghana; President Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria; Abdoulaye Wade of Senegal and Joyce Banda of Malawi.
That’s the class of former presidents Uhuru should want to be associated with, not those dragged from office kicking and screaming such as Laurent Gbagbo of Ivory Coast and Yahya Jammeh of Gambia, among other strongmen of yesteryear who ruled their oppressed masses with an iron fist, and have only the endless suffering of their people and deaths as their legacy.
It’s an easy decision and we hope and pray that voters show up and vote in masses for Raila because failure to do so would be giving Jubilee an opening to rig. Voting in masses for Raila will deny Jubilee the opportunity to do so.
May we have a fair and peaceful election, and may the candidate who garners the makority of the majority of the votes genuinely cast be sworn as our next President.