A Raila – Uhuru Run-Off Will Be Another “41 against 1” Scenario


Kenya is likely to be faced with another “41 against 1” scenario in next year’s general elections especially if there is a run-off pitting Raila Odinga against Uhuru Kenyatta. And this appears to be Raila’s latest strategy with his call for Uhuru and Ruto to be allowed to contest the presidency despite their ICC baggage.

If I were Uhuru’s strategists, I would call my troops back to the drawing board and come up with a new way of ensuring that there is an outright win in the first round. Even as Kenya struggles with fighting tribal politics, the anti-Kikuyu presidency sentiments are a reality that may just defeat G7’s original idea of blocking Raila’s presidency.

But it is  not only Raila who can benefit from a run-off with Uhuru. Even Mudavadi has a better chance of being president if he faces Uhuru at the run-off. But Raila is assured of the presidency as long as he faces Uhuru at the run-off and thus his latest change in tune.

Raila is one of the few unpredictable politicians in Kenya and the change in tune on whether his rivals facing charges at the ICC should be on the ballot may not have surprised many. This is because he usually changes tact as days progress and his reading of the political environment.

It is clear that Raila now wants his rivals – Uhuru and Ruto – on the ballot despite their charges at the ICC. In this, he sees a well calculated opportunity for him to ascend to the Presidency without been seen to have used foreign forces but riding on the will of the people.

Raila knows that if Ruto, Uhuru, Mudavadi and Kalonzo are all on the ballot, he can win the first round and most likely face Uhuru at the run-off. Here, he would be assured of a win by riding on the “Kenya should not have another Kikuyu president after Kibaki” wave. Rift Valley and Western Kenya which would most likely vote against him in the first round would have a high chance of voting for him in the run-off.

These are the reasons why Raila is counting on a win at a second round vote in the run-off.

To start with, the amorphous G7 Alliance will field more than a single candidate in the elections. The communities from where Uhuru, Ruto, Kalonzo and Mudavadi come from expect them to be on the ballot as Presidential candidates. There is no assurance that if Uhuru is supported by Ruto, the latter’s supporters would support it and the reverse also stands.

By fragmenting their support base, politicians in the G7 Alliance will help Raila capture first position in the election but deny him the 50 per cent plus one vote that is needed to be President. Uhuru appears to be the most likely candidate to take second position in the first round but is not likely to beat Raila in a run-off.

The key reason why Uhuru is not likely to beat Raila in the run-off is because he is not assured of Ruto, Mudavadi or Kalonzo’s support. The three politicians lead supporters who share in the sentiments that a Kikuyu should not be president after Kibaki. It is therefore likely, regardless of what kind of agreement that the G7 politicians will make, that their supporters will not support Uhuru in the run-off.

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7 thoughts on “A Raila – Uhuru Run-Off Will Be Another “41 against 1” Scenario

  1. I do not think that is the correct position, uhuru will be in the run off, but with whom? Mudavadi and Rotu one of them will be in the run off and that’s the tricky part. And that is where the threat is . Look at it from the numbers and the anti kikuyu presidency. will work for them. Madavadi has the nice guy appeal who is in a very neutral tribe . Ruto is the bad Guy who we really do not like a lot , neither do we hate, but we all admire he is sharp hardworking and really a role model to all who hassle. Uhuru we love but with no reason . shida iko hapo.

  2. This mind boggling and quite truthful, what am wondering how can we look at all this whichever the outcome without the tribe tag?

  3. In fact Raila has been building towards this scenario for quite sometime. Remember “it’ll be ODM vs PNU in 2012?”, “two horse race”?, Mudavadi is a kibaki’s (read: Kikuyu’s) project?”. If u read between the line he knows the surest way of winning the presidency is by creating the same anti-Kikuyu sentiment as obtained in ’07.

    I wish the Kikuyu politicians were enlightened enough not to run for the F-ing presidency for at least one term. Then again what’s a leader without followers(supporters)? I’m heaping all the blame for the consequences of “42 against 1” in 2012/3 on the supporters of those Kikuyu leaders.

    ’07/’08 PEV’s History will repeat itself a second time as …

  4. I can’t agree more with this analysis. For example, when Jirongo said on KassFM that Ruto was a “Kikuyu” project the whole Kalenjin nation was aroused and this forced Ruto to rush to Kass and try and “clear the air”. The Kikuyu fatigue is true and I believe Raila will use it to his favor, RealPolitik, and Uhuru is not Kibaki.

    • I can’t agree more with you. The ten shilling question is why must every other Tom, dick and Njuguna run for the presidency?? And I’m hoping you wont tell me of “Kikuyu have the Democratic right…”

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