Human Rights activist, Boniface Mwangi, has heaped blame on President Uhuru Kenyatta claiming that he played a key part in setting up Azimio La Umoja flagbearer, Raila Odinga, for failure.
Mwangi, in a statement dated Tuesday, August 13 first claimed that Raila and his running mate, Martha Karua, were given false and doctored feedback on the progress of the August 9 General Election by a prominent figure in the Azimio secretariat led by Uhuru.
After the election day, August 9, the activist alleged that Karua received a phone call while vote tallying was still ongoing and was convinced that Raila had won the polls in his fifth stab at the presidency.
"Throughout the entire week, even as Kenya Kwanza shared their numbers, Raila and Martha were given numbers from Azimio’s secretariat that assured them they had won. I couldn't imagine that lies would come from a secretariat where the chairman of the coalition was the sitting President of Kenya. My very boisterous posts were based on these assurances," Mwangi wrote.Photo of Boniface Mwangi speaking during an episode of Cleaning The Airwaves taken on July 4, 2021.YouTube
The phone call motivated Karua to the extent that she declared the election in their favour even before the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) had tallied the presidential results.
Karua met Azimio leaders at the Kenyatta International Conference Centre (KICC) on August 13, confident that they had carried the day. Mwangi also alleged that the team were furnished with misleading intel that saw him and other Azimio allies and bloggers post misleading information on their social media pages.
"When Martha went to KICC to meet Azimio leaders and said we had won, she was basing her statement on the figures and numbers she was given by the Azimio secretariat. After the Bomas fiasco, came the court case. We were presented with evidence by the same respected Kenyans in our team– evidence of how we had won.
"Once again, I was vocal about how we had won. I believed the said evidence. Martha also believed them. Everything I posted was based on the information that was availed to us. Looking back, it is now obvious that we were fed with misleading information, up until the very last minute. The question arises: was this a long con?" Mwangi wondered.
Raila Relapses, Trusts Uhuru
According to Mwangi, Raila's camp dropped their guard on the basis that Uhuru's endorsement seemingly guaranteed them a first-round win in the presidential election.
Uhuru was key in the appointment of the secretariat who failed to deliver on their mandate.
He argued that because of Uhuru's advice and open campaigns for Raila's candidature, Azimio was viewed as a state project and hence struggled to shake off the project's tag.
He added that the President's presence at the helm of Azimio's leadership also sabotaged Raila's presidential bid since it was viewed as a continuation of Uhuru's legacy which was characterised by inflation and graft.
"Because of Uhuru’s incessant and ill-advised utterances, Raila and Martha struggled to shake off the projects tag. Far from being state projects, Raila and Martha's reformist credentials needed no emphasis. Unfortunately, Uhuru was the chairman of Azimio, a position that I stated publicly that he should resign from.Raila Odinga and his running mate, Martha Karua arrive in Taita Taveta on Tuesday, July 12, 2022Raila Odinga
"His presence in Azimio made Kenyans believe Raila and Martha would be a continuation of Uhuru’s presidency. Uhuru ended up sabotaging what would otherwise have been a very robust campaign," He opined.
According to the renowned activists, Azimio depended on Uhuru to spearhead the secretariat preparations operations, but in the end, they failed in strategise and mobile their bases to turn out and vote.
"We failed to protect our agents from the temptation of easy bribes from our opponents. We allowed them to be compromised at the polling stations. We also failed to protect our votes because we had too much faith that the IEBC would conduct a credible, free and fair election," his statement read in part.
Uhuru also gave the impression that he was the one who fronted Karua as Raila's running mate, which turned out to be detrimental to the Azimio faction.
Raila's Next Plan
Resigned to fate, Mwangi advised Azimio to unite and hold the incoming administration accountable by playing its active opposition role.
He urged the registrar of political parties to rein in political impunity and crack down on politicians elected under Azimio who defected to Ruto's Kenya Kwanza.
"Ideally, all those elected under the Azimio coalition in breach of the Azimio pact should be subjected to a by-election. They should resign, and run on a Kenya Kwanza ticket. These last-minute decamping is deceitful and a betrayal to the people who elected them.President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga during their NDC at KICC on Saturday, February 26, 2022PSCU
"There is still some hope, though. The Azimio Coalition has a majority in the legislature. The opposition leaders will need to work together and focus on the mandate the voters gave them and be very disciplined to deliver to the voters’ expectations. Azimio has control in 23 counties. We want to see a difference in governance in their counties," he advised.
He also urged Raila to set up the Raila Odinga Leadership Centre to train and prepare the next generation of leaders that can transform Kenya.
Raila, he said, remains an inspiration to Kenya and can inspire a new generation of active citizens to hold all duty bearers to account and demand transparency, and integrity.
"6.9 million Kenyans, who voted for Raila, are hurting and they need direction. Some 8 million Kenyans, mostly young people, did not vote in this election. That's more than those who voted for either Raila or Ruto.
"If galvanized, this could be the “Third Force”. I look forward to being part of this movement, the one that will hold Ruto’s government accountable for every campaign promise he made," Mwangi stated.
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