In response to Otieno Kajwang’s red-line stance on ODM Party Loyalty, and the idea of ‘selecting’ those most loyal to the party, an ODM party supporter with some historical facts put forth a candid rebuttal of Kajwang’ assertions.
According to blogger Dikembe Disembe, ODM has sometimes rewarded those whose loyalty could not be ascertained, like in the case of current Migori County Senator Dr. Wilfred Machage. Here’s the response:
ODM PARTY LOYALTY:
How loyal was Dr Machage when he was selected by the party instead of Mr. Magaiwa in Migori County? Mr. Magaiwa had stood with the party during its worst moments. Was in ODM in 2007 at a time Machage was in PNU and even hosted Kibaki in Kuria. Was in the “yes team” at a time Machage joined Ruto in the “no camp”.
When Machage realised the new constitutional order had changed politics on the ground, he jumped to ODM, was given both the orange cap and the T-shirt and the certificate. Magaiwa was more popular with the larger Luo voters in Migori County than Dr Machage. He was the people’s choice.Did Dr Machage bring the Kuria vote in reciprocity? ODM trampled on the people’s choice and lost ‘part’ of the people. And by the way, Magaiwa was also a Kuria, just like Machage.
We can spend weeks AND eons discussing what democracy means in ODM but we won’t agree. What kind of democracy brought back Machage in parliament, as a senator, on ODM ticket? And you tell us about party loyalty? Seriously? Are we fools? Kajwang’? When ODM messes grassroots elections, voter apathy ensures. It’s not like Nyanza has no numbers. Those numbers get weakened by party actions prior to elections.
Nyanza loves Raila Odinga but may not like every other hanger-on who prop up Odinga’s name having bought off, or been ‘awarded’, an ODM certificate in Nairobi. Otherwise Prof Ayiecho Olweny would be the current MP in Muhoroni. Nyanza, and indeed other regions, too have an opinion about democracy it can express. We thought that these coming polls would offer a complete break with the past; but when people like Kajwang’ still talk of selection, it beats logic.
Â Now, Kajwang’ may just be bullying around, but Carson said it emphatically, “people have reputations, people have histories. . .” so when Kajwang’ aims less, the question is, can party detractors form some unfavourable perception that in Kajwang’ there are the muted thoughts of Raila Odinga? By the way, nobody is bothered about Kajwang’. Party opponents don’t care about Kajwang’.
Â They care about Raila Odinga. Kajwang’ wasn’t going to form any government. But his (statements) are the kind of mindless, feckless chatter which brought on us that curse – giniwasekao kata gweno ong’eyo – while nothing was happening on the ground. We know, because history has repeated it, that whenever internal processes are fake, or plainly robotic, people somehow rebel.
With proliferation of the FM radio and TV and newspapers and a generation more literate and living in a new century where information is a click away, revolutionised by the internet. Democracy itself is lived and experienced in nanoseconds. It’s like what’s going on in the Olympics. I do not need to be in Sochi to have a ‘mediated opinion’ that Russia is ill-prepared.Â You see it live; because this generation tweets it. Then it is taken over by the media and when online, it is yours. It doesn’t have to be what it is. It only needs to be what it looks like.
I have shared moments with many who voted the Jubilee Alliance because of what ‘it looked like’. We also know, because it is their in the “duck test”, that when it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck and waddles like a duck, then the bird in question is a duck. It can’t be a penguin, It can’t be a pelican. It cannot be a dove.Â IT IS A DUCK.
You know why some of us get frustrated: because ducks can’t win elections. Ducks are too slow. Ducks are too pedestrian. Just because ducks too lay eggs doesn’t make them eagles. But ducks can be resilient. Unlike their cousins, the now extinct dodo, ducks endure. So here are two paradoxes of the duck: It endures but it can’t win. It can multiply but it can’t win. And the duck is the most loyal. It has nothing to lose. Its loyalty pays.
Â How then do we do away with the duck. First, we can’t change it to be anything else. It will remain a duck. I have an idea: Let’s rear more eaglets, to eat more ducklings. We can’t do away with the ducks completely, else they become extinct, yet we still need their ‘loyal input’. But we can reduce their number! Those with ears, let them hear.