2022 PLANS

ODM and Jubilee resorting to politics of survival

Jubilee and ODM are ravaged, so bruised that it would be hard to imagine they can form a formidable vehicle on their own.

In Summary

• The President has been sending mixed signals on who he prefers, this ostensibly is to confuse the Nasa brigade and finally remove his not very hidden card as a comprise.

• The talk about an alliance between Jubilee and ODM started immediately the handshake was announced.

Deputy Whip Maoka Maore, Minority leader Junet Mohamed, Jubilee vice-chairman David Murathe, ODM secretary-general Edwin Sifuna and his Jubilee counterpart Raphael Tuju
Deputy Whip Maoka Maore, Minority leader Junet Mohamed, Jubilee vice-chairman David Murathe, ODM secretary-general Edwin Sifuna and his Jubilee counterpart Raphael Tuju
Image: HANDOUT

That the two biggest parties are now struggling to survive speaks volume about the state of our politics. It's broken to the core and a truly heterogeneous, nationalistic party founded on strong and shared philosophy and values is a mirage.

ODM and what remained of the Jubilee parties are now resorting to face saving gimmicks punctuated with camaraderie here and there to make their supporters continue believing that good tidings are in the offing. It's politics of trial and error. 

Jubilee and ODM are ravaged, so bruised that it would be hard to imagine they can form a formidable vehicle on their own. The two parties are selling their 2017 images. Even the numbers coming from the registrar of political parties are out-dated. Crunching them thus becomes a futile exercise. Kenyans have moved but not the two, hitherto large parties in Kenya.

The President has been sending mixed signals on who he prefers, this ostensibly is to confuse the Nasa brigade and finally remove his not very hidden card as a comprise. The talk about an alliance between Jubilee and ODM started immediately the handshake was announced.

It was ODM that was excited then and just as now went about town with the message. But it died off when ODM refused to pen a pact due to suspicion that rocked the unity facade due to what the Orange party termed as lack of sincerity from the President's side. 

The party cited intention not to lose its identity. ODM at that time also argued that it didn't want to be associated with Jubilee "failures", opting to work under the framework of the handshake instead. But when Kalonzo Musyoka inked a working agreement with Jubilee, it's ODM that went ballistic, calling Wiper opportunistic while accusing it of jumping the gun.

Remember, it is ODM that at the time of Kibra by-election had called Nasa a dead coalition was the one now feeling jittery at the Wiper's decision to work with Jubilee. This has been the modus operandi that anytime a Nasa ally moves closer to jubilee or the President, the party leader goes on a tangent threatening joining other unlikely camps.

All these tantrums aimed at winning its place back in the President's inner sanctum.

The current camaraderie and lofty talks about an alliance must be understood in that context and import.

It's more of a smokescreen than anything concrete but it helps the two parties to ward off possible further fallout as the disgruntled members are told to wait for bigger things ahead. It is also meant to send a message to the other Nasa members, who up to now have voiced their strong opposition to endorsing the ODM leader and/or other leaders the

President may want to front, that the two parties have a resolve that may not be derailed by some "inconsequential parties".

It further helps the President to keep Raila Odinga in his corner as he tries to manage his succession.

Odhiambo Jamwa is an economic and political analyst