Opposition chief Raila Odinga and his “Dream Team” have stepped up the offensive against Jubilee and pitched the theme of economic exclusion and sabotage of non-supporters.
They also have planned a hectic schedule of activities for the former Prime Minister in his presidential bid.
The ODM squad led by Mombasa Governor Ali Hassan Joho, known as the “Dream Team”, yesterday said Jubilee’s economic exclusion and sabotage include flooding Kisumu with cheap imports of Chinese fish and moving the Port of Mombasa.
“The port is moving to a different part of the country through a policy that remains not too well disguised. That is economic sabotage … Rice is being imported from Pakistan in exchange for tea exports. That is economic sabotage,” Joho said at Raila’s Nairobi office yesterday.
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ODM rising star: Kilifi Woman MP Asha Juma at Empatipat Maasai moran ceremony Photo/File
Joho, known as the ODM “superman”, will spearhead Raila’s 2017 campaign.
At a press conference, Johoaid no regime in independent Kenya has been as “exclusive and divisive” as Jubilee.
“Jubilee has spent the last four years fighting to destroy everything the people want,” he said. Joho said Jubilee is fighting devolution, fighting the Constitution and fighting full disclosure and implementation of the Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission report.
“In the process, they are stealing from the people and making new promises. Corruption has reached levels never seen before, even in our worst years … That is why he [President Uhuru Kenyatta ] doesn’t understand why other people are not eating meat, while he does.”
Joho was accompanied by Junet, Kisumu Governor Jack Ranguma and Kisumu Senator Anyang’ Nyong’o.
Fiery Raila defender: Suna East MP Junet Mohammed during his home coming party at Migori stadium in July Photo/File
Other members of the Dream Team are Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya, Kajiado Central MP Elijah Memusi and woman MPs Mishi Mboko (Mombasa) and her Kilifi counterpart Aisha Jumwa (Kilifi). Others are ODM chairman John Mbadi and secretary general Agnes Zani.
ODM’s new rallying cry against President Uhuru Kenyatta involves claims of economic exclusion of non-supporters, economic sabotage and mega graft.
“Jubilee does not deserve a second term because of its deliberate policy of economic sabotage. It is impoverishing communities and regions t perceives to be non-supportive,” Joho said.
“Even the new Jubilee Party logo — Uhuru and Ruto holding hands — shows it is about two people and their communities. But even those communities are beginning to realise they are being used for individual gains by the leaders. They are asking questions.”
Dream team: ODM party acting Secretary General Agnes Zani consult during the party’s National Executive meeting at the Orange House on July 14, 2016. Photo/Jack Owuor
The Dream Team has postponed Raila’s Eldoret rally on Saturday — instead he will attend a church event there. The region is considered the backyard of DP William Ruto.
“We didn’t want to interrupt Raila’s church function with politics,” ODM director of elections Junet Mohamed told the Star.
Instead, a two-day blitz is planned in Raila’s backyard.
The Eldoret rally could be held on October 8, as the opposition storms the region perceived to be under Jubilee lock and key.
The opposition supremo then will join his troops for a Saturday rally, a mammoth gathering in the lakeside city.
On Sunday, Raila flew to South Africa on undisclosed business after visiting veteran politician and Maasai elder John Keen at the Aga Khan Hospital in Nairobi.
He was back in time for a two-day charm offensive in Narok on Thursday and Friday as the battle for the Maasai vote intensifies.
Raila will first meet leaders in Kilgoris town on Thursday, then attend a rally there.
He will address another rally in Aitong in Narok West constituency that afternoon. He flies to Narok town the next day.
He will spend Friday in Narok town where he will address grassroots leaders in the morning and address a rally in the afternoon. He will open and office in Dikkir and meet local leaders his spokesman Dennis Onyango said.
During the burial of former Minister William Ole Ntimama on September 14, Raila and Uhuru had an ugly exchange about Ntimama’s political allegiance and those who eat meat, meaning those in power, and those who just salivate, meaning the opposition. That signalled the duel over the Maasai vote.
The opposition promises to make Uhuru a one-term head of state, no mean feat since there hasn’t been a one-term President in independent Kenya.
Just last week, Raila combed villages in Taita Taveta and Kwale for support as he aims to ring-fence the Coast region, long considered an opposition bastion. But Jubilee has made inroads.
But days after his departure, his Cord co-principal and Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka headed to the region.
Kalonzo will camp in Mombasa on Saturday and Sunday to popularise his bid for the Cord presidential ticket. He will meet regional Wiper delegates on Saturday and hold a mega rally at the Tononoka Grounds on Sunday.
ODM also plans another three-day jamboree in Nairobi to mark ODM’s 10th anniversary. It’s schedule for October 14, 15 and 16.
A similar colourful event was held in Mombasa two weeks ago, coinciding with the launch of the Jubilee Party on September 10 in Nairobi.
ODM party cahirman John Mbadi. Photo/ Jack Owuor
Yesterday, Nairobi county ODM chairman George Aladwa told the Star the three-day fete would be bigger than the Mombasa bash.
“We will have a delegates conference on the 15th, followed by a meet-the-people tour of Nairobi, capped off with a grand rally,” the former mayor said.
Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero, known to have a formidable war chest, will be at the centre of the Nairobi fete.
Celebrations will continue in ODM controlled counties as Raila sets the stage for a do-or-die rematch with Uhuru.
Raila has been keen to lock out Jubilee from Nyanza, Western and the Coast.
The return to the ODM fold of Funyula MP Paul Otuoma has bolstered his bid to ring-fence Western. Otuoma had relinquished his position as ODM vice chairman and head of national security.
Sources said the ex-Prime Minister is also scheduled to travel to Marsabit although the dates have not been confirmed.
Pastoralist communities are turning into a battleground between Jubilee and Cord and are believed to be the 2017 swing vote.