A major division between the top leadership in the National Super Alliance (Nasa) — Raila Odinga, Kalonzo Musyoka and Musalia Mudavadi — could be in the offing following the vicious war witnessed in the just concluded Kibra by-election campaigns.
The campaigns that saw ODM leader Odinga raid Mr Musyoka’s Ukambani turf for three governors to help him campaign for his candidate, Bernard Imran Okoth, exposed underlying differences between the two leaders.
This is in addition to ODM’s refusal to share part of its Sh4.2 billion political party’s windfall, which led to a bitter altercation with Mr Mudavadi’s ANC and even Mr Moses Wetang’ula’s Ford Kenya.
Mr Odinga, in a move viewed by Mr Musyoka’s lieutenants and political pundits as “undermining to the Wiper leader,” reached out to governors Alfred Mutua (Machakos), Charity Ngilu (Kitui) and Kivutha Kibwana (Makueni) to accompany him to Kibra for the campaigns while overlooking his deputy principal in the Nasa coalition.
This comes barely two weeks after Mr Musyoka’s Wiper party lost Mutonguni ward by-election to Dr Mutua’s Maendeleo Chap Chap party.
On Tuesday, Mr Musyoka’s confidant, former Machakos Senator Johnson Muthama, fell short of declaring that it was over between the two leaders.
His sentiments signified a simmering feud that could explode anytime between the one-time bosom friends who put up a spirited campaign in 2013 and 2017.
Mr Muthama, who sounded unamused by the three governors camping in Kibra for Mr Odinga’s man said: “As the Nasa co-chair who is involved in the management of the coalition, with capital letters, I want to say that my time to comment and speak is not yet. I will speak at an appropriate time,” Mr Muthama said while Wiper vice-chairperson Mutula Kilonzo Jr, referred the Nation to the party’s secretary-general probably due to the sensitivity of the issues.
Former Kathiani MP Wavinya Ndeti, who unsuccessfully tried to unseat Dr Mutua, was also not amused probably because Mr Odinga was courting her opponent.
The feud did not end there; it escalated when Mr Mudavadi scoffed at Mr Odinga for courting the governors who attended the Kibra rallies. Apart from the Ukambani, trio, others were Wycliffe Oparanya (Kakamega), Anne Waiguru (Kirinyaga), James Ongwae (Kisii) and John Nyagarama (Nyamira).
During campaigns for his candidate, Mr Eliud Owalo in Kibra, on Monday, Mr Mudavadi claimed that Mr Odinga was so desperate to an extent of courting “corrupt governors” with a promise of protection.
“Several governors were called to Kibra. Most of them have swindled public funds from county governments and their files are already with the DCI and Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission and are now hiding behind the old man (Mr Odinga) to be protected during investigations,” the ANC leader said.
But ODM through secretary-general Edwin Sifuna issued a terse statement yesterday reminding Mr Mudavadi of the mega Goldenberg scandal he claimed the ANC leader presided over during his tenure as Finance minister.
“We need to remind Musalia that he put the country on the biggest corruption path with Goldenberg and that was the beginning of mega scams in Kenya. It happened because of his spinelessness,” Mr Sifuna wrote in a statement.