Kanu sees path to poll success in Uhuru, Raila unity
- Political analyst Bigambo argued that the current political intrigues within Jubilee are likely to suffocate its internal growth as 2022 draws near.
- Prof Iraki says no party can thrive for decades with a lot of indiscipline, so Ruto has an uphill task to restore sanity in Jubilee if he wants to vie for the presidency using it.
Kanu is now banking on the growing camaraderie between President Uhuru Kenyatta and Opposition leader Raila Odinga to increase its chances of success in the 2022 General Election.
Aside from President Kenyatta and Mr Odinga, the party led by Baringo Senator Gideon Moi stands to gain the most if talk of a proposed government of national unity materialises.
The party, a pale shadow of the colossus it once was when it bestrode Kenya’s politics for close to four decades, now sees the arrangement as its best bet to get back into power.
“As a party, we do not want to stagnate, and growing for us means getting even closer to the leadership of this country. And so the question remains: if it is in our party’s best interest, why not?” party Secretary-General Nick Salat told the Sunday Nation.
While he insisted that Kanu was not reinventing the wheel, Mr Salat said the party was ready “to go the extra mile to be even more in”.
“If and when our support is needed, we are ready. If we are needed to serve in any position, we are ready. Our top decision-making organ endorsed this kind of arrangement,” Mr Salat explained.
Tiaty MP William Kamket, a Kanu MP, has been vocal about what he said were impending changes in government, saying that the party was going to benefit from the realignment to come “soon”.
For Kanu, it appears the shift in the relationship between President Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto has opened doors, especially in the Rift Valley.
The party, Mr Salat said, has been keen on the newfound Uhuru-Raila truce under the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI).
The party is now pushing for reforms in the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) ahead of the 2022 polls.
“Even with the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, life has not stopped. We supported and still support BBI for various reforms in the IEBC because we are keen on free and fair elections,” he said.
The Kanu official went ahead to suggest to the Senator Yusuf Haji that BBI debates should to go on online.
“Reggae is not muted completely. In fact, we should embark on teleconferences … to move on with the reggae agenda. When there was Spanish Flu in 1917, politics did not stop. Even now, the political discussion has to go on as we adhere to the government's directives during this pandemic,” said Mr Salat.
Apart from eyeing alliances with like-minded leaders, Kanu has rolled out a series of online campaigns seeking to revamp itself.
Mr Salat said: “We are focused on reawakening Kanu as Raymond Moi said during Mzee Moi's funeral, and at the centre of it all will be Gideon Moi, whom we shall ask to lead the party, to take its rightful position in Kenyan politics”.
Mr Javas Bigambo, a political analyst, argued that the current political intrigues within Jubilee are likely to suffocate its internal growth as 2022 draws near, putting DP Ruto's bid to succeed his boss in jeopardy.
“The Jubilee intrigues are politically unhealthy for the party, and deprive it of the internal environment for growth, planning and cohesiveness in strategy toward 2022,” said Mr Bigambo.
He added: “Such squabbles also inhibit the growth of internal democracy within political parties as institutions and amount to slowing the growth and performance of those parties as enablers of progressive democracy in the country”.
He is of the view that even if DP Ruto’s allies claim they are in Jubilee to stay, if the division escalates, chances are high they might need another party to help them in consolidating their political bastions.
“These wars are going to cost DP Ruto. They continue to disorganise his initial cohesive political machine that Jubilee has been. He therefore needs to create or work with another party,” Mr Bigambo elucidated.
According to Prof X.N. Iraki of the University of Nairobi, no party can thrive for decades with a lot of indiscipline, so DP Ruto has an uphill task to restore sanity in Jubilee if he wants to vie for the presidency using it.
“Kanu was in power for many years because of party discipline. You cannot get power without a good party machinery,” said Prof Iraki, adding that the Raila Odinga factor should not be underestimated.