Kenya:Opposition is still in place and vibrant, Raila says

By Samuel Ouma

Raila Odinga
Raila Odinga

National Super Alliance Coalition leader Raila Odinga has dismissed claims by some leaders that the opposition has been tamed by the government following its leaders’ close association with President Uhuru’s administration.

Addressing press on Thursday, Raila distanced himself from the information being propagated that he and his co-principal, Wiper party leader Kalonzo Musyoka have joined government despite landing international jobs through the help of President Uhuru Kenyatta.

The opposition chief maintained the opposition is alive and intact noting that making President Uhuru Kenyatta did not mean he is in government.

“I have not joined government. I do not hold any position in the Jubilee administration. Therefore, nothing stops me from criticizing the government. Those that have contrary views are wrong,” said Raila.

Raila was responding to scathing attack launched on him and Kalonzo by another Co-principal Musalia Mudavadi over their political deal with the government. Mudavadi castigated them for abandoning their supporters saying such move depicts desperation and selfishness.

“As can be seen, the choice to be in Jubilee government is personal and the current reciprocation to individuals who have pledged loyalty remains personal. It is out of desperation and wants for selfish-fulfillment. I have faced such a dilemma before but stood for democratic principles,” reiterated the Amani National Congress party leader.

He questioned their stand following new friendship between them and Jubilee Government, their rivals in the last two general elections. He noted it is unreasonable to make such a move as they participated in last election to form the government, not to land in a government formed by adversaries.

“Granted, at no time during the campaign did we aspire to be in opposition. It is the outcome that confined us there. But at no time also did we ask Kenyans to vote us to be in government formed by others,” he added.

Last month Raila landed plum job at African Union as a High Representative for infrastructure Development in Africa. He will support and strengthens African Union’s departments and those of planning and coordinating agency of new partnership for Africa’s development.

Kalonzo Musyoka’s appointment as the new head of the Joint Monitoring and Evaluation Commission (JMEC) on peace in South Sudan raised eyebrow on the role of the opposition in the country. Many argued that the government is aiming at eradicating opposition so as to carry out its ill-activities.

In July 2018, Moses Wetangula, fourth National Super Alliance principal lashed out at Raila for betraying them by entering into a peace deal with Kenyatta without including other principals. The Ford-Kenya party leader labeled the opposition a moribund organization.

Later he crowned himself as the new opposition chief after castigating Raila for his move which did not go well with the former premiere allies.

“I am leading the opposition and we are fighting for Kenyans. In history, we have people who fight and in the process of the fight, however strong and lethal they are, they get captured. And once they are captured, they distort the process of the fight, but eventually others emerge and lead the fight,” Wetangula said.

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