WILLIAM RUTO, THE DIMINISHING POLITICAL BRAND.
In basic study of physics, it is very obvious that whatever goes up MUST come down.
In April 2018 a Month after the World celebrated handshake between President Uhuru and RT Hon Raila Odinga, Deputy President William Ruto called a meeting of all Luo Nyanza elected leaders through Hon Ken Obura who was the key convenor. The political situation in Nyanza and other pro Baba regions at the time was very solemn, there was confusion on where Baba’s supporters were going. William Ruto seized the opportunity and pounced, with the self assuredness of being the next CIC.
Ken Obura had just lost his Kisumu Central Parliamentary seat. He was furious. He thought this was the best moment to pay back against Raila and ODM.
The aforementioned meeting happened at KICC and the attendance was very impressive. William was so excited, he told the leaders on how he is going to take care of their interests now that Baba is obviously not going to contest for the Presidency again. He asked the leaders to immediately identify projects that he should launch in the region and give a list of allies that they wish to see appointed into government. He spoke condescendingly about Baba and Uhuru, assuring the listening audience that he is the acting President and he will without doubt take up the position in 2022 and he does not want to leave the Luo out of government.
The luo nation appearing to rebel against Raila was so sweat for Ruto.Some of the leaders hurriedly prepared lists and vowed unrivaled loyalty to Ruto. Little did he remmember that Raila is a political genius who works from the answer back to the formula- handshake first then deal with the repercussions later. And true, he did it.
Working with extreme speed without caution, Ruto hurriedly occupied the entire seventh floor at KICC. At the time of this occupation,lifts were blocked from stopping on that floor, he had it labelled in golden letters, “OFFICE OF THE FIFTH PRESIDENT OF KENYA”. Something that had never been happened anywhere in the world and especially by a seating Vice or Deputy President.
The only other second in command who came close to creating a parallel centre of power was Josphat Karanja. It ended in tears. He later on died an isolated and neglected man.
This was Ruto at the apex, wielding unchecked powers.
These were the days when he said at every stop in his endless tours of Western Kenya, “Nyinyi Waluhya mjipange saa hii upande wangu, la sivyo, nitawapanga” he also said, ” Ule mshenzi atajaribu kusimama mbele yangu nitapita na yeye”.
Kalonzo became, ” Yule mutu wa kubeba paybill na kulala kwa lami”
Musalia became, ” Yule mlevi wa makabuti kubwa ambaye hana plan”.
Wetangula became, “Yule jamaa wa kupigwa na Bibi na kiongozi wa chama ya kijiji”. The chest thumping and bravado was unprecedented.
As all this happened, the highly underrated Uhuru watched in silence.
Indeed, as they say, still waters run deep. He quietly executed the most intelligent methods of disarming a politician in government without causing instability in the country. Ruto’s KICC secret office was first to bite the dust. By November of 2018, Ruto had been cut loose from the Presidency and all his delegated powers redistributed to his juniors in government. His influence in the Jubilee party was also curtailed despite his spirited fight back, including when he told Baba, ” Huwezi nifukuza ODM tena unifuate unifukuze Jubilee”.
Meanwhile, William noticing that he is out of the power matrix,went on a campaign frenzy, doing endless meetings and dishing out money in sacks. His money bought him favour in major news rooms. He ensured all news in all major stations both print and electronic was about him. His game plan was to ensure he creates the perception that he is crafting a political battle that pits the commoners Vs the Kenyan elite, in a clandestine narrative christened, “hustlers Vs dynasties”. Trying to create an euphoria two long years to the general elections.
When the grand master of Kenyan politics Raila Odinga hit the airwaves to denounce the narrative, William and his team hurriedly abandoned this and went for what they call an economic model, Bottoms up. Nobody in Ruto’s team understands or has ever attempted to explain this model. Very soon, when we hit campaigns proper, the bottoms up will remain on Ruto’s lips only.No one else will want to answer to what they don’t know.
UDA is born and Ruto promised that this will be one huge political party. One year down the line, the party can only brag of winning seats in Central Kenya, it’s purported penetration to the rest of the country is a stillbirth. The party is basically a two community entity. The media hype has been dimmed by massive loses in all by-elections held across the country.
As the party fades so too is the Presidential candidate, stuck with Rigathi Gachagua as the only option for running mate. Ruto is also faced with the hard reality of having amateur political novices for candidate in various elective positions. Recently in Karen, he was heard complaining about the fact that his campaigns are only active when he is present at any given place.In a clear show of frustration at the fact that he might not have a team and given that a Presidential election is about having a strong team as opposed to a strong candidate without team players.
Ruto has realized late in the day that once Azimio sets it’s sails, it will be impossible for him to match their countrywide reach.
As the curtains slowly close down on Ruto’s four years high voltage campaign against himself, Raila is checking in with a thunder.
The full firepower of the AzimioLaUmoja campaign teams that are soon going to storm the political terrain.