By Samuel Ouma | @journalist_27
A research conducted by Ipsos Synovate has disclosed that majority of Kenyans are rallying behind the March9, 2018 handshake between the opposition leader Raila Odinga and President Uhuru Kenyatta.
The duo agreed to work together following chaos that marred the country following the bungled 2017election leading to death of a number of people, destruction of property and closure of businesses.
The study shows 86 per cent of the respondents support handshake because it has restored peace and unity which was on the verge of crumbling.
However, the coastal region has the highest number of people who have never heard about the handshake at 25 per cent, followed by western and eastern at 16 per cent and 15 per cent respectively.
Northeastern and Nyanza residents lead in those who feel that the truce has brought development.
In general, 12 per cent of the respondents have never heard of Uhuru-Raila dalliance. The research also found that many people are of the idea that the opposition party, ODM is on its death bed while 60 per cent felt that internal wrangles would kill the ruling party, Jubilee.
24 per cent of those interviewed hold that it has weakened the opposition. The research was conducted between April 15 and 18.
Since the famous handshake the ruling party has experienced fracas which has split the party into two factions, anti-handshake led by the deputy President William Ruto and pro-handshake spearheaded by former party vice chairperson David Murathe.
Ruto’s lieutenants have been criticizing the new friendship between the former arch-rivals claiming that there is a plan to scuttle his presidential ambition.
“As Jubilee Party from Rift Valley, we are demanding that the handshake thing should come to an end as it is an impediment to bar Ruto from becoming president,” reiterated Nandi Senator Samson Cherargei (Ruto’s staunch supporter).
Recently, the anti-handshake team was dealt a major blow after its three staunch members decamped to handshake camp.
Governor Anne Waiguru, who was deemed as the potential running of Ruto during next polls shocked many last week when she vowed to rally behind the handshake.
“Let’s give President Uhuru Kenyatta time to serve Kenyans then campaign at the right time,” said Waiguru.
Others who have ditched Ruto’s camp are legislator Richard Onyonka and former sports Cabinet Secretary Rashid Echesa.