By comrade Alberto Nyakundi Amenya
There is no contention that Engineer Raila Amolo Odinga, the presidential candidate of the Coalition Of Reforms and Democracy (CORD) in the August poll, is the most popular personality in Kenya today. Love him or hate him, he remains Raila. Those who hate his guts, Spartan discipline and incorruptibility are quick to infuse his past with muck which they often rake up to make others view him unjustifiably from a myopic and selfish prism.
Everybody has a past. Raila’s past today represents both a personal and national gain. He may have been a lone voice in the wilderness but today people who genuinely desire peace and progress for this country are saying “thank goodness! Raila is here to rescue us even though at 70.” Raila’s mission to salvage this country today is a déjà vu following widespread corruption, ineptness (today we say cluelessness), serious economic predicament and crisis of confidence.
Raila’s past has prepared him for the future. Although soft-spoken, he is highly principled and firm. He is not given to greed and vainglory. His years of rejection, loneliness, and electoral manipulation have tapered him into a firebrand that Kenyans cannot afford to ignore if they truly desire genuine change and economic progress. Those who judge him with his past are at best indulging in arrogant ignorance because no matter how sordid a man’s yesterday is, his tomorrow is squeaky clean.
Tomorrow is always a new page and it all depends on what we write on it.
Raila is not guilty of the allegations being heaped on him. Those making mountains out of the molehills of his past have elected to be deceptive. They know he is the man for the moment but they are doing everything outside the books to stop him. Kenyans have said no because just like in 1982, he is again here to rescue this country by tackling corruption, insecurity and revamping our economy. There is time for everything. There is no gainsaying Raila is the messiah we have been yearning for.
Those who say he is 70 and therefore should be stopped have not availed themselves of the pregnant lessons of history. South Africans did not consider Nelson Mandela to be 74 when they elected him to save the country from disintegration. The late Madiba’s fertile wisdom has continued to guide and guard the Rainbow Country in its journey to greatness. The United States recalled 73-year-old Ronald Reagan to save it from the crippling effects of economic depression. Again when America was confronted with a bitter war and economic depression, they found solace in a retired General, Dwight Eisenhower, who helped win the war and returned the country to the path of progress. France found its own Moses in retired General Charles de Gaulle, when it was bedeviled by war and a depressed economy. Abdoulaye Wade of Senegal was first elected President at age 74 in 2000.
Is Kenya not economically malnourished today? Is Kenya not at war today? Who is better qualified and in the mould of Mandela, Reagan, Eisenhower and Gaulle to rescue our nation from war, corruption and economic malfeasance? Is it that lily-livered crackpot at the helm that cannot venture to visit the Kenyan communities attacked by drought and severe poverty? Hell NO!
Raila is tested and proven and is reputed not to be skittish or indecisive about his responsibility once it is incumbent on him to act. He acts with the speed of light and very quick to decide on the next course of action.
Raila is also reputed as an exemplar of Spartan discipline, highly principled teetotaler, an avowed anti-corruption crusader and a man of the people. As a former Minister of Roads and Public works, Raila performed his duties diligently by accounting for every penny allocated to him and demolishing illegally built houses on roads.
The digital youth in State-House and his minions in both the public and private sector are presently spewing out a lot of thrash they believe could sway public opinion against Raila.
All the opinion polls are running in their favor courtesy of corruption. But they came a little too late. The revolution to reclaim Kenya has not only birthed but growing. They are sponsoring all kinds of false messages to impugn on the avowed integrity of Raila because having crippled our economy and made our youths jobless and desolate; they want a leader under whom it would be business as usual.
Raila Odinga is Kenya’s most celebrated politician because his politics transcends both tribe and religion. The wise say “Forewarned is forearmed” Time for RAO to save this nation from the shackles of perpetual slavery is now or never. President Kenyatta and his apparatchiks must be aware of the fury of a patient man. After all, patience surpasses learning.
God Bless Kenya
-The Banana Peddler