Tag Archives: ODM

Kenya – Uhuru and Raila battle for swing votes

Star (Kenya)

Jun. 19, 2017, 1:00 am

President Uhuru Kenyatta and Deputy Willliam Ruto greet residents of Kiambu during a meet-the-people tour of the area on Sunday. /REBECCA NDUKU/DPPS
President Uhuru Kenyatta and Deputy Willliam Ruto greet residents of Kiambu during a meet-the-people tour of the area on Sunday. /REBECCA NDUKU/DPPS

Both President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM candidate Raila Odinga are focussing their attention on swing votes as they consolidate their strongholds, five weeks to the election.

The plan by both candidates is to ensure that their strongholds turn out, almost to the last man and woman, to vote for them as they seek swing votes from regions their strategists describe as battlegrounds.

Bomet, Narok, Kisii, Meru and Tharaka Nithi are among the 13 counties that have become the epicentre of a ferocious political battle between Kenyatta and Odinga. Of the 13 swing counties, Odinga won seven counties at the last election, while Uhuru ran away with six.

Kenyatta beat Odinga in Isiolo, garnering 26,401 against Raila’s 14,108, in Mandera he got 94,433 against Raila’s 4,366, while in Kajiado Uhuru led by 138, 851 against Raila’s 117,856.

Kenyatta also beat Odinga in West Pokot, garnering 79,772 against 24,952.

However, Odinga beat Kenyatta in Nairobi by 691,156 against 659,490, Turkana 68,402 against Uhuru’s 30,285, Samburu 31,086 against 22,085, Trans Nzoia 92,035 against 74,466, Wajir 49,712 against 38,927, and Narok 118,623 against 109,413. In total, Odinga won in 27 of the 47 counties. An internal NASA document claims that the counties where Odinga won in 2013 had a total of 8,373,840 voters, compared to 5,977,056 in the 20 counties won by Uhuru. According to the strategy document seen by the Star, Odinga was disadvantaged by turnout.

The counties won by Odinga averaged a turnout rate of about 83 per cent compared to counties won by Uhuru that averaged 89.7 per cent.

At the same time, where Uhuru won, he won big, averaging 86 per cent of the votes.

Odinga’s average vote share in the 27 counties was a mere 70 per cent.

In what has given birth to the controversial slogan “10 Million Strong”, NASA says if the 2013 voting patterns are maintained, the counties won by Raila currently have 10,547,913 registered voters, compared to 7,556,609 in the counties where Uhuru prevailed.

This means Odinga’s chances of unseating Kenyatta are hinged on turnout.

Raila, who concluded a two-days campaign blitz in Meru and Tharaka Nithi counties on Saturday, the fourth such visit in six months, is convinced that he will get maximum turnout.

“The overwhelming reception we got from those two areas leaves no doubt that the ground has shifted in our favour,” said Raila yesterday. After visiting his home county of Kiambu yesterday, Uhuru will head to Meru to try and undo any gains Raila may have made. Raila is also heading to Western Kenya this week to seek to do the same in the wake of UhuRuto’s campaign tour of last week.

Although latest opinion polls have suggested a runoff, both NASA and Jubilee are pushing for round one victory.

Both sides are going flat out to get the majority votes in the counties of Nairobi, Narok, Kajiado, Turkana, West Pokot, Samburu, Trans Nzoia, Wajir, Mandera, Marsabit, Isiolo, Turkana and Samburu.

Once considered to be under lock and key by Jubilee, Meru is becoming restive and recent events in the area have alarmed the ruling party to the possibility that Raila could be penetrating the region.

In his last two visits, including last weekend, Raila drew large, enthusiastic crowds that have made NASA buoyant.

“If President Uhuru Kenyatta will not change the team in Meru, it will cost him a great deal in this election,” Meru Governor Peter Munya warned recently.

Jubilee’s Meru campaign team is led by Senator Kiraitu Murungi and Igembe South MP Mithika Linturi, but Munya said the two have “lost touch with the voters” and have no clout to deliver votes to Jubilee.

At a recent Jubilee function in Igembe North constituency, Kiraitu, once seen as the region’s political supremo, was shouted down, when he tried to dissuade locals against the former Prime Minister.

In a video recording that has gone viral, the people of Igembe North shouted “NASA!” in what appears to have surprised Kiraitu, who stood beside Igembe North parliamentary aspirant Maoka Maore.

In an interview with the Star, Jubilee Mount Kenya Youth Chairman Linford Mutembei said Uhuru should visit Meru “as things are getting out of hand”.

“He should come in person and camp in Meru for about three days. The President should also form a new campaign team with a youthful face if he wants to win in Meru. Otherwise the majority of the Meru electorates will vote for NASA,” Mutembei warned.

The NASA Coordinator in Tharaka Nithi, Prof Isaiah Kindiki, brother of Senate Minority leader Kithure Kindiki, said the region is tired of Jubilee’s empty rhetoric when the people are wallowing in poverty.

“NASA has not penetrated Meru, it has grown from within,” Prof Isiah Kindiki emphatically told the Star.

However, a recent opinion poll by Ipsos paints a different picture. Released on May 30, the poll indicates that Uhuru would win the Eastern region, that also includes NASA running mate Kalonzo Musyoka’s Ukambani turf, by 51 per cent.

Raila would secure only 36 per cent of the vote, the poll showed.

Last week, Uhuru gave Sh828 million to IDPs displaced 10 years ago in a gesture that has triggered jitters in opposition circles to the effect that Jubilee is bankrolling its reelection bid using State coffers.

But that is not all.

Since their election in 2013, Ruto has visited Kisii more than 20 times. In a deliberate campaign message, Uhuru and Ruto claim to have given high profile jobs to Gusii leaders, among them Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i and Chief Justice David Maraga.

The latter move however backfired, after the Judicial Service Commission rebuffed the President, saying any implication “that the appointment of the CJ was part of a political scheme is a grave distortion of law and fact”.

In an interview with the Star, Mutembei said the rivalry between Kiraitu and Munya for the county’s top is hurting Uhuru’s reelection prospects in the region.

He urged Uhuru not take sides in the war.

But Kiraitu, through his director of communication Patrick Muriungi, said the perception that NASA is gaining ground in Meru and Tharaka Nithi counties is a fallacy.

He said Raila should not be cheated by psyched-up crowds that he will actually get their votes.

“These crowds will not translate into votes as the two counties will vote for President Kenyatta in the August polls, according to all the voting patterns,” Muriungi said.

He accused ODM coordinator Mike Mutembei of hiring people to shout down Jubilee leaders and attend Raila rallies when he visits to please the ODM supremo in order to get handouts.

Kenya – Jubilee calls for probe over alleged Odinga hate speech

Star (Kenya)

Probe Raila over ‘hate’ remarks, Jubilee asks NCIC

Jun. 16, 2017, 3:00 pm
Opposition leader Raila Odinga receives Kajiado politician Tarayia ole Kores to ODM Party in Maili 46, Kajiado West on Thursday, June 15, 2017. /FILE
Jubilee Party has written to NCIC chair Francis Kaparo asking him to investigate opposition leader Raila Odinga over hate speech.

This followed comments by the NASA presidential flag bearer during his tour of Kajiado County on Thursday.

Raila asked the residents to protect their lands and not sell them to ‘outsiders’.

“…until now there is no land because of poverty…we want to change that so that people don’t sell their parcels.”

“Keep your land with you so that you don’t cry foul later on…let the buyers remain at their places of origin,” Raila said.

Jubilee views the comments as amounting to hate speech and want the opposition chief probed over the utterances.

In a letter seen by the Star on Friday, Secretary General Raphael Tuju said the comments are likely to spark violence.

“We all know that it only requires a very small match to start a very large and dangerous fire. With these comments, Raila has struck that match.”

“…the use of irresponsible and inflammatory language will ignite tensions within local communities and can only be regarded as hate speech,” Tuju said.

He asked the commission to review the utterances and establish whether NASA contravened the law with respect to hate speech.

“Raila’s language must be challenged today in the most robust terms. Kenya must move forward as a united nation and not be allowed to fall back into the hands of the abyss of violence.”

He said anyone, regardless of their position in the country, should not be allowed to incite such tensions and violence ahead of the August elections.

“They must face the full force of the law and this must be demonstrated publicly so that Kenyans and the whole world can see that such behavior will not be condoned,” he said.

Tuju demanded that the NCIC and other investigating agencies rein in Raila to put a stop to “the dangerous comments.”

The letter was copied to the Law Society of Kenya, IEBC, heads of diplomatic missions, Kenya National Commission on Human Rights and religious organisations.

“It is the responsibility of all good people of Kenya never to be silent when we recognise that some among us seek to take us down a dangerous path that could destroy this country,” he said.

This came after President Uhuru Kenyatta told off Raila for inciting Kenyans to violence.

He said Raila is treading the same path that led to the 2007/2008 post election violence.

“Yesterday he was talking about ‘wenye inchi‘ and ‘wenye wanafaa kurudi kwao‘ (those who belong and those who should return to where they came from) … and that is the same language he used to create conflict last time,” the President said in Bomet.

Nominated MP and JP Nairobi senator aspirant Johnson Sakaja said Raila has “crossed the red line and should be tamed now.”

“We all have the experience. People have lost their loved ones. People have been maimed. People have been injured. Scars still exist.”

“Even within the context of a power struggle that we are in right now, there is a line that we cannot allow any politician to pass,” Sakaja said.

Kenya – opposition alliance names Odinga as presidential candidate


Kenyan opposition leader Raila Odinga of the National Super Alliance (NASA) coalition addresses supporters after he was announced as the presidential candidate for the 2017 general elections during a rally at the Uhuru Park grounds, in Nairobi, Kenya, April 27, 2017. REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya
By Katharine Houreld and Duncan Miriri | NAIROBI

NAIROBI Veteran politician Raila Odinga will represent Kenya’s opposition alliance in the presidential election in August, his fourth time as a presidential candidate.

His nomination was announced by leaders of the National Super Alliance, known by its acronym NASA, to cheering supporters at a rally on Thursday.

In an acceptance speech, the 72-year-old former prime minister, the loser in Kenya’s last two presidential polls, pledged to lower food prices and tackle corruption. He has also promised public sector reforms and stronger local government.

Odinga, who comes from one of Kenya’s most powerful political families, will try to unseat President Uhuru Kenyatta, the wealthy son of the country’s first president and head of the ruling Jubilee party, who is seeking a second term.

Kenyans go to the polls on Aug. 8 to elect a president, lawmakers and local officials. Devolution means that many of the local races to control lucrative county budgets are expected to be closely fought.

The last elections in 2013 were largely peaceful but the country is still haunted by the two months of violence that followed the disputed 2007 presidential poll, when political protests rapidly spilled into ethnic bloodletting. More than 1,200 people were killed and 600,000 fled their homes.

The violence threatened the stability of Kenya, a solid Western ally and developing democracy in a volatile region.

Odinga served as prime minister of Kenya from 2008-2012 in a power sharing government set up to end the violence that followed former president Mwai Kibaki’s contested win. Odinga had been ahead when electoral officials abruptly stopped tallying votes and announced Kibaki had won. He first ran for president in 1997.

Odinga identifies as a left-winger and named his first son Fidel, after Cuban leader Fidel Castro. A hospital that his father helped build in Western Kenya, the family’s powerbase, is nicknamed Russia after its main financial backer.

Odinga has refused to rule out street protests if the elections are “rigged”, raising fears of potential clashes.

Kenya replaced the entire board of the election commission late last year after deadly protests over the widespread failure of electronic voting equipment in 2013.

Odinga’s vice-presidential pick, softly-spoken lawyer Kalonzo Musyoka, frequently refers to his born-again Christian faith and has been relatively untainted by Kenya’s frequent corruption scandals. He is 63 and has served in parliament or as a minister for nearly 30 years.

Party primaries were held this month, and parts of the country have already seen low-level violence and protests. Dozens of the primary races had to be suspended and re-run.

In Kisumu, a southern city that is Odinga’s stronghold, party officials declared two conflicting winners of the governorship race on Wednesday before the majority of votes had been counted.

The ruling party has also had to cancel and rerun many of its primary races amid complaints over lack of voting materials and rigging.

(Editing by Catherine Evans)

Kenya – Kenyatta warns against violence during party nomination process


By George Obulutsa | NAIROBI

NAIROBI Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta said on Thursday his government would not tolerate violence between rival camps of supporters in party primaries before a national election in August.

Two parliamentary candidates have been treated in hospital after being caught up in such a clash – a decade after an eruption of ethnic violence, in which more than 1,200 people were killed, following a disputed presidential poll.

“A culture of hooliganism during the electoral process must not and will not be allowed to gain currency and acceptance,” Kenyatta told a news conference at the main State House.

Kenyatta, the wealthy son of the country’s first president, is running for a second and final five-year term in the Aug. 8 vote.

The 2013 election passed off fairly peacefully, after opposition leader Raila Odinga, who is seen as Kenyatta’s main rival, challenged Kenyatta’s election in court. The court upheld the result.

Kenyatta’s Jubilee Party and dozens of others are nominating their candidates, to beat the April 26 deadline, and hand over nominees to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) by May 10 as required by law.

The main opposition coalition, the National Super Alliance of Kenya (Nasa), has yet to name its presidential candidate from among its top leaders, who include Odinga, and his 2013 running mate, Kalonzo Musyoka.

Millions of voters will also pick a new parliament and local authorities when they cast their ballots in August.

Contests to lead the country’s 47 local authorities are expected to be hard-fought affairs due to their budgets of billions of shillings.

Kenyatta said that all political parties taking part in the nominations had been given police protection to stem any acts of violence or hooliganism.

“Anybody who engages in acts of violence will be dealt with in accordance with the law, irrespective of who they are,” he said.

(Editing by Duncan Miriri and Alison Williams)

Kenya – Ruto will back Kenyatta in 2017 but run for office in 2022

Daily Nation

Meru Governor and PNU Leader Peter Munya

Meru Governor and PNU Leader Peter Munya addressing a crowd in Meru when he led a caravan to market the party on December 18, 2016. He rained his guns on DP William Ruto, promising to give him a run for his money in the 2022 presidential elections. PHOTO | PHOEBE OKALL | NATION MEDIA GROUP



Party of National Unity (PNU) leader Peter Munya Sunday stormed the backyard of his rival Senator Kiraitu Murungi, but trained his guns on Deputy President William Ruto, promising to give him a run for his money in the 2022 presidential elections.

Addressing rallies in Central Imenti and South Imenti, Mr Munya said: “The presidency cannot oscillate within Central and Rift Valley forever.”

Mr Ruto has declared he will go for the top seat in 2022 after President Uhuru Kenyatta, that is, if the latter wins a second term next year.

While Mr Munya says he backs President Kenyatta’s re-election in 2017, he will vie for the seat in 2022.

The Meru governor, who was accompanied by aspirants for various seats on a PNU ticket in the coming elections, accused Mr Ruto of plotting to return the country to a one-party state regime through folding up of parties to form Jubilee Party.

Speaking at Katheri during a rally to popularise PNU, Mr Munya said there is need for enhanced democracy in the country.

“Mr Murungi and his team are currently in Igembe accompanying the man from Rift Valley, who is pushing the one-party agenda. I request you to reject their advances,” Mr Munya said.


Mr Munya, who urged the residents to re-elect him, said Jubilee has failed to hold free and fair elections in the counties, with some aides and friends of politicians being named as officials.

Mr Munya was referring to the polls in Meru, in which close allies of Mr Murungi were elected last Thursday to run the party in the county, causing an outcry from some members.

“PNU will do free and fair elections unlike Jubilee Party whose elections were done by a chosen few. In Meru, they ended up selecting cronies of some leaders. PNU will do its elections from the grassroots, “Mr Munya said.

During Jubilee Party polls last Thursday, Mr Murungi’s closest allies, former Igembe MP Joseph Muturia and nominated MCA Alhaji Mwendia were elected Meru chairman and secretary-general respectively.

While urging the Imenti people to uphold a 2013 pact giving the Nyambene people the gubernatorial position for 10 years, Mr Munya accused Mr Murungi of using the Deputy President to fight him.


He hit out at a team nicknamed ‘Kikali’ (acronym for Kiraitu, Kajuju and Linturi) led by Mr Murungi saying they are out of touch with the people and are relying on Mr Ruto to hold meetings.

The team, which includes Women Representative Florence Kajuju and Igembe South MP Mithika Linturi, has launched a vicious campaign to dislodge Mr Munya in the 2017 polls.

Mr Murungi is to vie for the gubernatorial seat, Mr Linturi is seeking to be Meru senator while Ms Kajuju is defending her seat.

While welcoming the sentiments by Interior Principal Secretary Karanja Kibicho that those engaging in violence in political campaigns will face the law, Mr Munya said the police should start with arresting Jubilee Party supporters whom he accused of causing the chaos.

“If Dr Kibicho is serious with his calls for arrest of those causing violence in campaigns, the police should start with those who disrupted Jamhuri celebrations in Meru. The suspects are known because they were in Jubilee party colours. The deputy county commissioner was given money to organise the goons,” Mr Munya said as he led a caravan in Central Imenti and South Imenti to market his Party of National Unity.

Kenya – MP blames ODM and PNU for Ruto court appearance


MP Moses Kuria alleges political intrigues landed DP Ruto in The Hague


By TITUS OTEBA and Daniel Psirmoi  Monday, September 21st 2015

Church leaders and faithful pray for Deputy President William Ruto and radio journalist Joshua Sang at Kapsokwony Primary School in Mt Elgon Sunday. [Photo: BENJAMIN SAKWA/STANDARD] BUNGOMA:

The old rivalry between Party of National Unity (PNU) and Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) resurfaced Sunday during the prayer meeting for Deputy President William Ruto’s case at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in Kapsokwony, Bungoma County. During the meeting to drum up support for Ruto and radio journalist Joshua arap Sang that was attended by over 100 MPs, Gatundu South Moses Kuria set the tempo when he declared the ICC cases were political games between ODM and PNU. He claimed intrigues between ODM and PNU (now defunct) led by protagonists Raila Odinga and Mwai Kibaki, who were gunning for the presidency in 2007, were the main reason the cases were taken to The Hague. “Today I want to state it as it is. Whoever wants to get annoyed is his problem (sic). When we had election violence in Kenya, we had PNU and ODM. Each party was seeking victory. I was in PNU with [MP John] Serut and others. All of us rushed to the ICC,” he said. Mr Kuria said the politics surrounding the 2007 election saw the PNU-allied MPs present evidence in favour of President Mwai Kibaki against Raila Odinga-led ODM.

He said that he, Narc Kenya chairperson Martha Karua and other PNU leaders wrote a letter to the ICC after the 2007 elections while Raila and Anyang’ Nyong’o wrote another from the ODM side. Last evening, Narc Kenya chairperson, who served in as minister in Kibaki’s PNU government, denied Kuria’s claim through her lawyer Gitobu Imanyara. “Martha Karua refutes in the strongest terms possible the utterly malicious allegations made by MP Moses Kuria to the effect that she procured witnesses against Deputy President William Ruto jointly with he, Moses Kuria. Hon Karua has instructed me as an advocate to move to court both here and at the ICC to clear her name and also to hold Moses Kuria to account for his desperate and defamatory allegations aimed at tarnishing her name and reputation.

Hon Karua will be responding more comprehensively when she gets a full transcript of the allegations of Moses Kuria tomorrow,” wrote Imanyara on his Facebook post. Other leaders during the prayer session asked President Uhuru Kenyatta to petition the United Nations Security Council over the Ruto and Sang ICC cases. The MPs asked President Uhuru Kenyatta to make it clear to the international community that the case of his deputy is bound to split the country right in the middle if not handled well. Senators Billow Kerrow (Mandera), Kipchumba Murkomen (Elgeyo Marakwet), Stephen Sang (Nandi) and Charles Keter (Kericho), who led over 100 leaders allied to the Jubilee coalition at the prayer rally, said the stability of Kenya was at stake. Kerrow said the Head of State should tell the United Nations Assembly that the manner with which the ICC has handled the Ruto and Sang cases was meant to destabilise the country.
Read more at: http://www.standardmedia.co.ke/article/2000177035/mp-kuria-alleges-political-intrigues-landed-dp-ruto-in-the-hague

Kenya – is Kenyatta trying to woo Odinga’s supporters un his Nyanza stronghold?


In Summary
The Cord leader is heading to Busia County this weekend in an effort to stabilise his shaky Western Kenya sphere of influence, whose leaders have launched a fresh regional unity campaign.
Those in attendance were Mr Obado, Mr Otieno, Senator Wilfred Machage and MPs Omondi Anyanga (Nyatike), John Kobado (Uriri), Robi Mathias (Kuria West) and Shadrack Manga (Kuria East).
Mr Kenyatta’s State House minders were privately briefing that the MPs had declared a readiness to work with Mr Kenyatta for the sake of development in the area, political code for willingness to shift political allegiance.

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President Uhuru Kenyatta Thursday hosted a group of MPs from Cord leader Raila Odinga’s backyard, Nyanza, at State House in what could be a bid to make political inroads into the region.

On the face of it, the purpose of the meeting was innocent enough: to make plans for an anti-malaria campaign.

However, given that it was attended by MPs seen as defying the ODM discipline, it is the symbolism of it that is likely to lead to conclusions that it is a political move by Mr Kenyatta against Mr Odinga.

The Cord leader is heading to Busia County this weekend in an effort to stabilise his shaky Western Kenya sphere of influence, whose leaders have launched a fresh regional unity campaign.

The Luhya unity politics champions the emergence of a presidential candidate from western Kenya, a challenge to Mr Odinga’s regional supremacy.


The State House visit by the lawmakers from Migori County was organised by Governor Okoth Obado — an ally of Deputy President William Ruto — and Rongo MP Dalmas Otieno, who has declared his intention to lead a movement distinct from ODM in Nyanza.

A first by legislators from the ODM-dominated county since President Kenyatta was elected, the purpose of the visit was said to be planning for the Head of State’s tour of the region and launch an anti-malaria drive on Monday.

“Yes, the President met a group of leaders from Migori to discuss the Monday trip. He will launch the distribution of nets as part of an anti-malaria campaign since the county is one of the most affected by malaria,” said State House spokesman Manoah Esipisu.

He said the trip was being coordinated by the Health ministry.

Those in attendance were Mr Obado, Mr Otieno, Senator Wilfred Machage and MPs Omondi Anyanga (Nyatike), John Kobado (Uriri), Robi Mathias (Kuria West) and Shadrack Manga (Kuria East).

Vocal Suna East MP Junet Mohammed was left out by his colleagues who organised the meeting. Migori County Women Representative Dennita Ghati did not attend either. The two are loyal to Mr Odinga.

“They did not inform me about it probably because of my political position. But even if they did, I would have done a lot of soul searching on whether to attend the meeting or not,” said Mr Mohammed.

(READ: Luhya leaders work on unity party for 2017)

(READ: Cleaning house in ODM the right thing to do now)

(READ: President Uhuru Kenyatta’s Coast charm offensive)


Mr Odinga, through his spokesman, Mr Dennis Onyango, said MPs should consult the party on issues which have implications on its unity.

“The party was not involved in organising the meeting. While it does not insist on being involved in decisions MPs make in their day-to-day duties, it believes and hopes moves with serious implications are made in consultations with the people,” he said in a statement.

Cord deputy Minority Leaders Jakoyo Midiwo questioned the decision to exclude some MPs from the delegation.

“I was not consulted over the visit. I just heard some MPs went while others were excluded,” he said by phone.

Mr Kenyatta’s State House minders were privately briefing that the MPs had declared a readiness to work with Mr Kenyatta for the sake of development in the area, political code for willingness to shift political allegiance. Both Mr Otieno and Obado are perceived as having a close working relationship with the President.

Mr Odinga has lined up a series of events in Busia County tomorrow to shore up his support following a decision by some leaders from the region to start shopping for a common party in readiness for the next General Election.

In a move to repair his relationship with Budalang’i MP Ababu Namwamba, Mr Odinga is expected to join the MP tomorrow at the launch of Okoa Kenya’s signature collection drive in the constituency.

Later he will be hosted in Matayos at the homecoming prayers for area MP Geoffrey Odanga who is a member of ODM.

President Uhuru Kenyatta (Right) with Cord leader Raila Odinga during a past function. The President hosted a group of MPs from the Cord leader’s backyard, Nyanza, at State House on September 4, 2014 in what could be a bid to make political inroads into the region. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP|