Expert comment: No Ruto-Raila local politics deal

The President has expressed goodwill to support a Kenyan for the job.

In Summary
  • I don’t think the President is supporting Raila Odinga for African Union Commission chairman as local political issue.
  • The President has expressed goodwill to support a Kenyan for the job.

I do not think President Ruto supporting Raila Odinga for the African Union Commission chairman position has any connection with Kenyan politics.

That is an international job.

The President is simply just supporting a Kenyan candidate for an international role.

I do not believe there is any agreement on local matters. It is only that Raila has expressed interest in the AU job and Ruto, as a patriot, has decided to help him get the job.

Such a position must have the backing of the candidate's home country, and the leader of the host country is the President.

So, it is simply a show of goodwill from the President, and even if the country would have fielded someone else, the President would still have supported that Kenyan because the country stands to gain from that position.

Local politics aside, this is an international job that will also put Kenya  on the international map.

Obviously, Raila’s departure will have an impact in local politics, more so in his ODM party.

We will wait and see how it plays out within ODM itself and whether they can have another leader of Raila's stature.

But on our Kenya Kwanza side, we are firmly behind the President who is our party leader and the Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua.

For President Ruto, whether Raila were to be present in Kenya or not, he is a master politician and knows how to play his cards.

Raila’s departure will not, in any way, give Ruto any advantage in 2027.

In any event, he ran against Raila who was supported by senior people in government, at that time, and he won.

I don’t think Ruto will be advantaged by getting Raila out of the way.

Ruto's support is a goodwill message and demonstration that he puts the interest of Kenya ahead of everything else.

The AU position could bring with it some good developments that may not be obvious at present.

Let’s leave politics of 2027 for now, because a day in politics is a very long time.

The Gichugu MP spoke to the Star

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