POLITICAL DIRECTION

We'll follow Uhuru’s advice to support Raila — Jimmy Kibaki

However, it is not clear if his views reflect position of entire Kibaki family

In Summary
  • In his statement, he appealed to the President to stay longer in Mt Kenya region so that the residents could benefit from his wise ‘counsel and guidance.’
  • In recent months, Jimmy has gone public for their gratitude to the Odinga family, saying it was Raila's father who got his father into politics. 
Jimmy Kibaki joins TND as deputy party leader at Serena Hotel.
Jimmy Kibaki joins TND as deputy party leader at Serena Hotel.
Image: AMOS NJAU

Jimmy Kibaki has hinted at supporting ODM leader Raila Odinga’s presidential bid in the upcoming poll.

In short statement sent out soon after President Uhuru Kenyatta rallied Mt Kenya residents to back Raila’s presidency, Jimmy said they would follow the President’s advice.

“We have listened to him [Uhuru], and we will follow his advice,” Jimmy, whose father, the country’s third president, battled with Raila in the 2007 presidential election, said.

Jimmy said the Head of State spoke out his heart eloquently, adding that they carefully listened to him.

“His Excellency the President addressed his people of Mt Kenya directly, and in a very eloquent and fatherly manner.

“He gave us the background of his current political position, as well as the direction the people of Mt Kenya should take.”

However, it was not immediately clear whether Jimmy’s endorsement of the President’s political direction was the position of the entire Kibaki family.

In his statement, Jimmy appealed to the President to stay longer in Mt Kenya region so that the residents could benefit from his wise ‘counsel and guidance.’

Kibaki family is one of the most influential in the region, arguably after the Kenyattas and its backing of Raila, should that be the case, would be a big boost to the ODM leader leader’s bid.

In recent months, Jimmy has gone public for their gratitude to the Odinga family, saying it was Raila's father who got his father into politics. 

Jaramogi Oginga Odinga picked Kibaki from the lecture halls in Makerere University and made him Kanu's executive officer from where his political career began.

In 2002, Raila led Kibaki campaigns after declaring him "Tosha" even after a road accident that left him confined to a wheelchair.

At a meeting Wednesday during Sagana meeting, President Kenyatta publicly endorsed Raila to succeed him.

Uhuru said the former Prime Minister means well for the country.

“I am asking you to support Raila as he means well for the country,” the President said. 

He further said that the ODM leader understands where the country is heading, and will therefore be at peace to hand to him the leadership mantle.

Uhuru’s public endorsement is a major boost to the ODM leader who has for years been rejected by the residents at the ballot.


(edited by Amol Awuor)

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