By Kennedy Onyango- Bible Counselor and reporter for the Diaspora Times
To begin with, DP Ruto is a good and decent man deserving support. He has fought his way up from the periphery to the epicentre of power. He has supported Moi, Kibaki, Raila and Uhuru. If he says, it is his turn to be supported, he cannot be faulted.
On the other hand, Hon. Raila Odinga is an established and accomplished political luminary and statesman. His legacy of selfless sacrifice is well documented. In 2001 he closed ranks and worked with President Moi. In 2002, he campaigned aggressively to secure President Kibaki’s election. In 2007, he was short-changed at the ballot, but still put country first and crafted the grand coalition government.
Despite being Kibaki’s co-principal, he accepted with grace and humility Kibaki’s endorsement of his political opponent, Uhuru Kenyatta. In 2013, he disputed election results but in the end, yet again, accepted the outcome and moved on.
In 2017, Raila fought bitterly against President Kenyatta. He protested the outcome, as of right, but ultimately put his country first and went into the handshake- against the advise of key allies. He crafted a political settlement that guaranteed peace and permitted President Kenyatta to govern without disruption.
In terms of constitutional, institutional and political reforms, Raila Odinga’s immense contribution is well documented. He fought in the trenches to deliver key reforms and secure the liberties that we enjoy today.
In this election, Raila Odinga, yet again, seeks support. He has campaigned with appreciable poise and grace, downplaying the critical support of the outgoing President, and seeking to be elected only on the merits.
His choice of Hon. Martha Karua as running mate has excited a critical mass of women supporters for reason that since independence women have been relegated to the periphery of political power.
Now, this election has a chance to produce Kenya’s first ever woman Deputy President just in the third election under the Constitution 2010. This, undoubtedly, is a political masterstroke that has created a new momentum towards a constitutional moment.
Considering the strengths of both candidates, Hon. Raila Odinga is evidently, the first among equals. DP Ruto will have his turn, but not in this election. This is Raila Odinga’s moment. He deserves support. Get out, and vote for Baba and Martha.