LEAVE NOTHING TO CHANCE

MUTUA NDONGA: DP’s new strategy to woo voters unlikely to bear fruit

In his new five-point strategy, the key is the hustler nation narrative

In Summary

• As a person who interacts freely with Kenyans at the grassroots, the support that the ‘narrative of hustler nation’ was initially enjoying has lately gone down.

• Turning to DP’s allies, they would say these are the same politicians, who had promised us heaven on earth during the 2013 and 2017 general elections, yet have not delivered anything worth talking about.

Deputy President William Ruto.
Deputy President William Ruto.
Image: STEPHEN ASTARIKO

Deputy President William Ruto is leaving nothing to chance in his bid to succeed President Uhuru Kenyatta.

Hardly a day passes without him tweeting or saying in public that he is the best-suited candidate.

In his new five-point strategy, the key is the ‘hustler nation narrative’.

The second plank rotates around pronouncements that Uhuru’s key allies are secretly backing his campaign and would jump the ship at an opportune time.

As a person who interacts freely with Kenyans at the grassroots, the support that the ‘narrative of hustler nation’ was initially enjoying has lately gone down.

This support would mainly come from the Mt Kenya region, particularly the Western side, which is dominated by the Kikuyu community.

Today the tune has changed in this region. As some choose to adopt a wait-and-see attitude, others are treating the ‘wave’ with suspicion and mistrust. When the deal is too good, think twice?

Turning to DP’s allies, they would say these are the same politicians, who had promised us heaven on earth during the 2013 and 2017 general elections, yet have not delivered anything worth talking about.

How do they expect us to trust them? As the adage goes, the monkeys are the same only the forest has changed. So, Uhuru’s allies who have joined UDA and those waiting to do so when the time comes are out to fill their bellies.

President Uhuru Kenyatta, who is serving his second and final term, unveiled the ‘Big Four’ development agenda at the beginning of the current term.

As members of the ruling Jubilee party, one would have expected them to fully support the President’s agenda. This has not been the case and we have been seeing them rebelling against him.

Uhuru’s decision to shake hands with his main challenger in the 2017 presidential election is the stick that broke the camel’s back.

The Ruto team interpreted the move as a calculated plot to scuttle DP’s ambitions to succeed him. I have, however, never heard them giving convincing evidence to support their claims.

Since the birth of handshake on March 9, 2018, Raila is yet to declare that he will run for president. Instead, he has been reiterating he and President Kenyatta came to the conclusion that Kenya was more important than any one of us.

For the President, the chilling and heart-breaking events of 2007-2008 post-election violence were still fresh in his mind.

Then, hell broke loose after incumbent President Mwai Kibaki and his main competitor, Raila Odinga of ODM, maintained hard-line stances until when the international community intervened and forced them to cede the grounds.

Ruto, who was a close ally of Raila, was poised to become the prime minister if ODM formed the government.

Central Kenya who are no longer keen to support the ‘hustler nation’ narrative, would recall the vital role played by Uhuru at the time.

Members of the community living in North Rift were the main target.

For Uhuru, he would not sit and watch this madness.

He not only roundly condemned these killings but more importantly organised the evacuation of survivors from the hotspots areas and moved them to Internally Displaced People camps located in various parts of the country.

As he had pledged during the electioneering period, President Kenyatta walked the talk when he took the reins of power.

He presided over the exercise of their relocation and resettlement.

Each family had been given Sh400,000 by the state.

Political Analyst and Blogger

 

Edited by Kiilu Damaris