For the benefit of those who have the outstanding talent for jumping to conclusions for no other reason than perceived ethnicity, let me state upfront: I am NOT a Railamaniac, I did not vote for him, neither was he my preferred candidate had I been able to vote. I do not believe every word proceeding from his mouth is divine revelation, neither do I believe he is covered by a cloak of infallibility for all his deeds. Now feel free to read on.
The Right Honourable Prime Minister of the Republic of Kenya Raila Amolo Odinga DOES NOT have a pair of horns, a pointed tail and a forked tongue! He does not exude fire and brimstone from his nose and mouth. He is NOT Lucifer – in fact he is not even one of the minor demons. He is not a malevolent force that must be cast out with loud prayers, foul language and ethnic scare-mongering! He is a mortal man, replete with human weaknesses as any of us are – but also endowed with talents and skills as any of us are.
The Right Honourable Prime Minister of the Republic of Kenya Raila Amolo Odinga DID NOT conspire with his foreign masters to institute the Kenya cases at the International Criminal Court at the Hague: that honour goes to the Waki Commission, the Cabinet and the National Assembly – that is the unassailable fact and no amount of spin-doctory, however efficacious, can change that historical fact.
The Right Honourable Prime Minister of the Republic of Kenya Raila Amolo Odinga DID NOT evict the squatters from the Mau Forest, that was a decision of Cabinet endorsed by Parliament. No amount of disinformation and misinformation, however ingenuous, can change that fact.
The Right Honourable Prime Minister of the Republic of Kenya Raila Amolo Odinga is not any more power-hungry than any other politician that has sought office, including the highest office in the land. That is a label that attached to him by frequency of repeat by his opponents, and the gullibility of their followers and the Kenyan public at large.
The Right Honourable Prime Minister of the Republic of Kenya Raila Amolo Odinga is no more avaricious than any other private sector entrepreneur, or any other political leader, in our crony-capitalist system. That ‘greedy’ has become one of his most enduring titles is not a reflection of objective fact, but testimony to the power of efficiently prosecuted propaganda.
The Right Honourable Prime Minister of the Republic of Kenya Raila Amolo Odinga has achieved a lot in his life, and that it is accepted as fact that he has done ‘nothing’ with his years in politics is testament to the undiscerning minds of those that accept this fact as gospel truth – rather than a confirmation of its veracity.
The Right Honourable Prime Minister of the Republic of Kenya Raila Amolo Odinga has indeed since 1992 been the Member of Parliament of an area that includes a very large slum with high levels of poverty. But the poverty in Kibera is no higher than the poverty in any other urban slum – and a huge number of rural constituencies. To blame this on him personally is an amazing twist of logic, especially considering no other Member of Parliament is similarly adjudged.
The Right Honourable Prime Minister of the Republic of Kenya Raila Amolo Odinga has never to the best of my knowledge given cause to believe he is a vengeful and vindictive individual – that he has been so successfully labelled as such is attributable to the personal fears and nightmares of those that detained, tortured and exiled him. Indeed he has shown rare capacity to work with his ‘mortal’ enemies.
But of these sins, the Right Honourable Prime Minister of the Republic of Kenya Raila Amolo Odinga is guilty: he, like every other leading politician has manipulated ethnicity to advance their ambition; he, like every other person in government, is culpable for the squandering of public resources, even if only by failure of adequate oversight; he like every other contestant in the just concluded elections has employed scare tactics, misinformation, disinformation and personal attacks against his opponents – either directly or through his surrogates and proxies. If he were even remotely guilty of the many legally-defined serious offences he has been accused of, and given the powerful people arraigned against him throughout his recent political career, Rt Hon Raila Amolo Odinga would be in jail – not contesting the presidency or the outcomes of the elections for the same!
The Right Honourable Prime Minister of the Republic of Kenya Raila Amolo Odinga is a man that stood and fought when lesser men turned tail and fled, or submissively acquiesced to great evil for personal benefit and/or political advancement. Was he unique in this? Of course not – there were many others that showed equal passion and fearlessness: Paul Muite, Gitobu Imanyara, Koigi wa Wamwere, Chibule wa Tsuma, Mashengu wa Mwachofi, George Anyona, Wanyiri Kihoro, John Khaminwa, Gibson Kamau Kuria, Davinder Singh Lamba, Peter Anyang’ Nyongo, Ms Martha Njoka nee Karua …. too many to name! This is the distinguished company in which he is counted.
But lo! This is forgotten history! Rt Hon Raila Odinga is the Devil’s Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary in this corner of the earth! He has been liberally abused, derided and diminished by men whose greatest distinction is having been cogs in the machinery of a Police State that severely oppressed and brutalised Kenyans. He has been liberally insulted by snotty-nosed young whelps that were not even an idea when he and others suffered great tribulations that we may earn the right to insult them! He has become a by-word for the vilest lies, misinformation and disinformation.
The Prime Minister of the Republic of Kenya, the Right Honourable Raila Amollo Odinga had equal right to contest the presidency, and an inalienable right to challenge the outcome of that contest in the Supreme Court of Kenya as provided for in our electoral laws. He is under no legal obligation whatsoever to concede if he has cause to believe that the contest was not free, fair, transparent, credible and in accordance with applicable laws. If contestants were never intended to challenge electoral outcomes, the law would not have made provision for such challenges – to concede would have been mandatory! By all means let us express our opinions on the folly or wisdom of the choice he has made, but shame on you and shame on you again if in your retarded mind you believe this gives you the right to insult him and the millions of fellow citizens that believed he was the right choice!
In conclusion, I quote Donald Rabala whom I am made to understand first authored these words. Whereas I do not agree with all his sentiments, it is a befitting third-party swansong for a remarkable man who has run a long race well, and whom history will show made a valuable contribution to the rise and rise of the Nation of Kenya:
One day, you will remember Raila Amolo Odinga. A leader who fought for multi-partism and democracy. A leader who accepted the pain of torture and detention. Without him, there would be no TNA, URP, FORD, ODM and the likes.
One day you will remember Raila Amolo Odinga. The only Luo leader who endorsed a Kikuyu president and through him, the Rainbow Coalition was formed. Kibaki, a Kikuyu, became president. And when the time to return the favour came, the people from the mountains turned their faces against him. They called him a dictator and a tribalist. Yet, he had once supported one of their own….
One day you will remember Raila Amolo Odinga. A leader determined to save the Mau forest. And when he condemned illegal harvesting of trees by settlers in the forests, he was called a betrayer by the people from the valley. To them, Raila Amolo Odinga was supposed to sit back and watch forests burn, since the people from the valley had voted for him in 2007.
One day you will remember Raila Amolo Odinga. A leader whose presidential votes were stolen by someone he once endorsed to be president. But he humbled himself, almost looking like the looser, and worked with the then president, just to prevent further bloodshed. It was like a woman who has been tortured by her husband. She runs away from home and comes back later, because of her love for her confused children and forgiveness for her husband.
You will not remember him now, because right now, he’s a dictator, betrayer and a tribalist to you. But a day is coming when the whole nation will remember Raila Amolo Odinga….the best president….we never had…..