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OPINION

Is Uhuru using his ‘former enemy’ to derail DP Ruto’s state house ambitions?

Kipchirchir Rop
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President Uhuru Kenyatta and Raila Odinga [Source/PSCU]

The 2017 general elections and its subsequent nullification had two sworn enemies – Raila Odinga and Uhuru Kenyatta. The country was at a standstill as Raila boycotted the repeat elections, effectively handing Uhuru and his deputy Ruto a second term. 

Just when Kenyans were wondering when the politically instigated chaos would end, Uhuru and Raila surprised Kenyans with the now famous handshake in March last year. Subsequently, a building bridges initiative was started to foster peace and unity across the country. 

The protests ceased and calm returned to the city which had known teargas leading to Kenyans conjuring up the term ‘tear gas Monday.’ Peace was restored not only in Nairobi but all over opposition zones. 

The loser in the handshake, seemingly, is Deputy President William Ruto. It has alienated him from his bosom buddy as Uhuru progressively grew cosier in their friendship with Raila Odinga. 

In a country riddled with political betrayals, President Uhuru Kenyatta is seemingly using the second law of power, as written by Robert Greene in his book, '48 Laws of Power'. 

The law states that ‘never put too much trust in your friends; learn to use your enemies.’ Both Raila and Uhuru have been on opposite sides since 2013. Raila was a thorn in the government’s flesh, unleashing corruption scandals after scandals.

To a discerning eye, the handshake isn’t about anything other than political interests. Chief among these interests is 2022 succession politics. Recent statements by David Murathe point at the fact that DP Ruto is not the favoured by the powers that be to succeed the son of Jomo. 

However, DP Ruto has grown too powerful in the government and within the ruling party. Who is better placed to outdo the hustler from Sugoi? The enigma himself, Raila Amolo Odinga.

A coalition between a leader from Mt. Kenya region, Gideon Moi (a plausible Uhuru choice) and Raila Odinga will win at 8 am in the morning. The plan seems to alienate William Ruto and his Kalenjin votes which is paltry compared to the rest of the country. 

The premise behind this argument is the fact that Raila commands influence across the country. DP Ruto will not match him even if he uses his seemingly deep pockets.

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