Business mogul turned politician Jimi Wanjigi has for the first time spoken publicly about the controversial 2018 swearing-in of Raila Odinga.
Even though Kenyans are only aware of the 30th January 2018 oath, there was a secret swearing of the ODM leader at his Karen residence hidden from the media and government functionaries, which was also skipped by Musalia Mudavadi, Moses Wetangula, and Kalonzo Musyoka.
”When we laid bare the results of the servers at Intercontinental Hotel we had agreed that Raila would host us for lunch where we would swear him in. We went ahead as planned but the three NASA principals did not join us. We still went ahead but to swear him in and recorded the event on video,” Wanjigi says of the first private swearing-in, which acted as a momentum to the real oath-taking ceremony at the center of the county’s capital in Uhuru Park.
“We decided that we are going to swear in Raila, and to do so we needed to create momentum before the event. That’s why we organised demonstrations. We wanted to capture the political psyche before the momentous day,” he adds.
Wanjigi recounts, at one point on the material day (January 30th), Raila looked uncertain about the oath after his fellow principals deserted him the second time at the last minute and he wanted to personally go look for them.
“We were at Dusit 2 and as we watched the crowd swell at Uhuru Park. The NASA co-principals had gone missing and Raila said he wanted go look for them. But the look on his face suggested he was trying to buy time. I told him, we are not going anywhere, let the principals keep off but we must drive down to Uhuru Park,” the mogul explains.
At one point Wanjigi says Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka begged Raila Odinga and his men not to take the oath, telling ODM members and the team around Raila they would be held responsible at the ICC.
“He told us do anything but don’t take the oath. If there is any bloodshed after that we will find ourselves at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague, Mudavadi and Wetang’ula were ambivalent in the entire episode that day.”