Wednesday, June 11, 2014

RAILA ODINGA HAS NOT CHANGED, HE HAS ONLY MELLOWED WITH AGE.

If there are people out there who thought Raila Odinga had changed - because of age - from a revolutionary agitator and tormentor of President Daniel Arap Moi in the 1980s, to a softy too exhausted to return punches, let them think again, because current political events do not support that line of thought.

If anything, Raila, a one-time political fugitive and detainee, and currently leader of the opposition Coalition for Reforms and Democracy (CORD), has mellowed with time; and in the process acquired a sting that is more potent; a determination that is more resolute; and a following that is exceedingly more fanatical, almost cultist. 

Even at his advanced age of 70 years, Raila seems far from hanging up his boots. His recent three month-long sabbatical in the United States appears to have injected some kind of magical energy into a man who, not too long ago, was boring us with incessant complaints about a stolen election.

Instead of whining about a lost opportunity, Raila has now decided to wage an all-out war against the Jubilee Government of Uhuru Kenyatta and William Ruto, perhaps with the intention of making life as difficult as possible for the two to enjoy restful nights and spare time to implement their development agenda.

What Uhuru and Ruto initially thought was a political gimmick on the part of Raila intended to win public sympathy following the controversial Supreme Court ruling that favoured Jubilee, has now turned out to be a nagging headache threatening our stability. 

With a growing list of "to do" items on its in-tray, the Government appears to be under siege both in and outside Parliament. It is obvious too that the political and psychological damage likely to arise from the upcoming country-wide CORD rallies, is more than what the Jubilee Government - or any African government for that matter - is capable of absorbing.

The threat of increased insecurity both from within and from without the country cannot be ruled out because nothing will stop elements of evil from riding on the rallies and causing deaths and damage. And that is the reason why I am opposed to the planned gatherings.

The Jubilee Government may have been slow in implementing its core policies since taking over more than a year ago, but it deserves a chance. The prevailing toxic political landscape will not help to make things better.

Nevertheless, I hope security agencies will ensure maximum security for people attending the rallies as well as those, like me, who want to be left in peace.

What Uhuru and Ruto must do now - as a matter of urgency - is to put on their thinking hats and come up with a broad-based solution before this circus turns ugly.

And that is my say.