President Uhuru Kenyatta has had two big events in the last two days. One was the State of The Nation speech at the National Assembly and the other was launching the new status of Nakuru as Kenya’s fourth city.
It is Uhuru’s speech in Nakuru that must be getting the UDA government in Karen very nervous.
Uhuru pointed out very directly in Nakuru that he thinks Raila Amolo Odinga is running a marathon that could win him the presidential election.
It was also quite telling that the president is carrying out such a big event in Ruto’s neighborhood and the DP is nowhere to be seen. He was not invited there. That tells you all you need.
UDA big dream is that Uhuru goes missing during the election campaigns or even that Uhuru eventually reconciles with his angry Deputy to help Ruto walk into State House as a coronation, not a contest.
That will not happen for a couple of reasons. One is that within UDA, some of Ruto’s ardent political supporters are hopeless loudmouths who are very offensive every time they open those mouths.
For example during Uhuru’s speech in parliament UDA politicians went on a hate festival about how long and useless and boring Uhuru’s speech was. The likes of Murkomen, Duale, and of course the noisy Susan Kihika were all over the place attacking the president for making a long speech.
Senator Murkomen has actually come up with the idea that parliament should pass a law limiting the president’s speech in the National Assembly to a few minutes.
Considering that parliament has nothing to do and never does anything for Kenyans maybe that is something that can keep them busy earning our money. Next bunge should pass laws limiting how much time the president can spend in the washroom and in the shower. These are the kind of things that would improve the lives of Kenyans immensely.
The real problem with this squad is that by attacking the president on frivolous things and even sometimes going after Uhuru Kenyatta’s family, they have made it very clear to Uhuru that Ruto has surrounded himself with some very uncouth politicians and will do their bidding which could be very harmful to the country.
Ruto is smart enough to know that he would never utter anything to rile the president but of course, to please his political groupies, Ruto has had to vent all over about how President Uhuru ruined their development plan with his handshake with Raila Odinga. Ruto does that to attack Raila but Uhuru is not stupid, he understands the bitterness Ruto has with him. Ruto believes he is owed the presidency by Uhuru.
Raila on the other hand has realized he will have to earn every vote he gets. Nobody owes him anything and that seems to be working for him as he gains momentum against Ruto’s 4-year campaign.
It is funny President Uhuru seems to think Ruto is running a sprint. I mean, running a sprint for 4 years would kill you. You are supposed to do a sprint in seconds not even minutes. But a four year sprint?
A few straightforward things emerged in president Uhuru’s two-day activities that Kenyans are paying attention to.
Number one is that Uhuru thinks very highly of his handshake with Raila. He talked about it in parliament and in Nakuru.
In fact, Uhuru considers the handshake as a big part of his legacy as a president who put real energy in uniting the country regardless of tribes and political affiliations.
That is a big deal for Uhuru and maybe for Kenyans all around the country. There is no doubt Uhuru is going to continue to promote his handshake with Raila as a big game-changer for Kenyan politics and a good path to follow.
William Ruto on the other hand thinks the handshake was the biggest sin president Uhuru committed against him and against the country.
So how do you reconcile Ruto with Uhuru on the handshake issue? It is impossible and both parties accept that.
The only problem for Ruto here is that he is in the politics of attacking Raila as his primary weapon to get to State House and he thinks the best way to attack Raila at this time is to vomit on the handshake and tell Kenyans how it ruined the country.
So that is their first problem.
Secondly, Uhuru thinks very highly of what he has achieved with his Big Four Agenda and took his time in his speech to explain the things he has already done with his Big Four Agenda in infrastructure, medical institutions and services and recouping the economy from the ongoing devastation of COVID with its increasing variants.
Ruto thinks Uhuru killed the Big Four Agenda with the handshake and that is his narrative and he is sticking to it regardless of the facts.
Ruto never explains to Kenyans how Uhuru and Raila sabotaged the Big Four Agenda. Kenyans can see the Express Highways are coming up to streamline transportation in the country. They can see medical facilities being built.
The other nightmare on the Big Four Agenda for Ruto is that when Kshs. 100 billion was allocated to build dams in Ruto’s own backyard as part of the Big Four Agenda, the money was stolen and the biggest culprit right now is Ruto’s own friend and appointee to be our Treasury Chief, Mr. Henry Rotich.
When the theft was unearthed, William Ruto was all over the place defending this grand theft and claiming only Kshs. 7 billion was stolen.
Of course, the dam projects are now dead and Kenyans are in the whole for hundreds of billions even to some nonexistent companies.
So if you are Ruto, you complain about the Big Four Agenda being sabotaged by Uhuru and Raila while you support the thieves ripping off the country and sabotaging mega projects that could provide jobs to Kenyans, improve people’s lives and help develop the economy of the country.
So who is really sabotaging the Big Four Agenda?
Is it Uhuru who is trying to unite the country or William Ruto supporting his friends who are stealing hundreds of billions meant for the projects to enhance the Big Four Agenda? Kenyans will be the judges about that on the General Election day.
And yes, Uhuru is not going to be gang-ho in this election but it is already very clear where he leans and it is going to matter big time.
Uhuru has a lot of supporters and admirers in Kenya and not just in the Mt. Kenya region but across the country. His voice is going to matter bigly in the 2022 General Elections.
Adongo Ogony is a Human Rights Activist and a Writer who lives in Toronto, Canada