Uhuru Betray Raila Odinga? is the conspiracy theory and many of the questions by Raila Odinga’s supporters after the August elections.
The idea of “too big to fail” fits with the completed 2022 general elections, and Raila Amollo Odinga would come to mind.
In general, it was believed that he was too powerful to lose the most recent election.
Many believed that the odds were finally in his favor after four unsuccessful attempts to win the presidency of Kenya.
Many people thought that the presidential race was his to lose given his political odyssey, networks, charisma, and mobilization abilities.
It’s important to recognize that the 2022 election was unlike any other in history for Odinga and his followers.
But when his fifth attempt at winning the president failed, everyone’s mouths fell.
So, after the unbelievable happened, many of Raila Odinga’s supporters are questioning the ingenuity of Pres Uhuru Kenyatta in their handshake partnership.
Did Uhuru betray Raila in their partnership as many questions if the handshake and infights within the Jubilee government were a campaign tool employed by Uhuru to market Ruto?
There is no doubt that the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition party anticipated it would win the presidential vote on August 9.
Due to his friendly connection with his handshake partner Uhuru Kenyatta and his support from the “deep state,” Raila’s brother, now Siaya Senator Oburu Odinga, stated outright in July 2020 that Raila was most likely to succeed the presidency in 2022.
In the months prior to the election on August 9, the former prime minister and his close political supporters exhibited the same confidence in winning the presidency.
Even more, Uhuru’s endorsement of Raila’s bid, especially to his vote-rich Mt Kenya backyard, was perceived as the much-needed charm offensive to sway the region’s electorate to the blue side.
The elections were held as scheduled on August 9, and judging by the cheery expressions on election day, Raila and his supporters were confident in their chances of winning Kenya’s top office.
However, the tunes of Raila’s close pals abruptly changed as the votes were being counted, much to the dismay of Azimio fans.
Azimio leaders, seemingly sensing defeat, started calling on Uhuru to go to their rescue and ensure Raila was declared the winner.
Did Uhuru Betray Raila Odinga?
Disappointed Azimio supporters started lamenting on social media, saying Raila was played by Uhuru.
They could not fathom how their leader lost, yet he had the support of the incumbent president.
Embakasi East MP Babu Owino on his social media platforms said: “President Uhuru Kenyatta you must act now or was this a long CON? Baba has WON the elections just Protect his win. What’s the point of Kenyans voting if we rig out the winner?” he said on August 14, 2022.
Narok Senator Ledama Ole Kina also expressed called on Uhuru to act, further claiming Raila’s win was delayed.
Additionally, Supreme Court Verdict also came as a blow to Azimio leaders and supporters and this conspiracy theory that Uhuru possibly took Raila for a ride started resurfacing.
Babu Owino, moments before the apex court’s judgment, made the same allegations saying: “BABA, you will forever be my Hero. They played you all along. It was a LONG CON. We live to fight another day.”
Statehouse-linked political analyst Mutahi Ngunyi also made similar insinuations. Ngunyi opined that it was Uhuru’s plan to make Ruto president, adding that Raila was just a “decoy”.
“Maybe Raila was a decoy. And Uhuru’s plan all along was to hand over to Ruto. I say so because Uhuru acted sub-optimally in this election,” he said, further alluding that indeed, Uhuru was all along supporting his estranged deputy Ruto.
Political blogger Robert ALAI also said Uhuru could have played Raila after the Azimio leader lost at Uhuru’s polling station in Gatundu. “I repeat, I can at least deliver my own polling station if I am President. I can deliver that.”
“Language of the powerless NASA supporters in 2017 who said they wanted to secede because Baba was their president. You bring this line? Really? You can’t redeem your image as a partner who didn’t deliver through such utterances. You are a complete letdown ndugu.” Alai said after Uhuru in an Azimio Parliamentary Group meeting said “Raila will be his leader”.
“We loved #baba but it seems #uhuru wanted someone to chill with after his term. I wish you knew. Let’s all support the new president,” Hon. Caleb Amisi, MP also said.
However, political analyst, Ephrain Njega speaking to a local media said there was no evidence to support the idea that Uhuru betrayed Raila Odinga, especially due to the duo’s frosty relationship.
How could it be possible that after perhaps a long day of trading barbs in public, Uhuru and Ruto would go home and have a hearty phone conversation on how he (Uhuru) would support Ruto’s bid against Raila’s?
He opined that if Uhuru wanted Ruto to occupy the top seat after he retires, the easiest path was to support him publicly instead of using Raila as a decoy.
“There is no logic to support such a complex and lengthy process to achieve the same political objective. But the dislike between the two (Uhuru and Ruto) was and still is real, whatever the cause,” he told this writer.
Similarly, political analyst Wilson Rotich, who is also a Kisii University lecturer, opined that arguing that Uhuru played Raila is a far-fetched idea.
According to Rotich, it was obvious that Uhuru was determined to block Ruto’s bid by whichever means because his plan was to hand over power to his handshake partner.
“It is very clear how hard he tried to use the state machinery in what the Ruto camp calls state capture,” he said.