Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta will support his historic opponent, Raila Odinga, in the presidential election scheduled for August 2022.
“The person to whom I will hand over power, and you all know him, and you mentioned his name, will inherit an economy of 13 trillion shillings (more than 000 billion dollars, editor's note). I can't take the risk of handing over to someone who won't take care of this economy, and I say it here without fear. I'm going to hand over to that person, the one you all know." Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta is determined to get his successor through in the next presidential election.
The election, which will take place next August, promises to be exciting. Because this person that everyone knows and that Uhuru Kenyatta supports is none other than Raila Odinga, who had tried to win the last three Kenyan presidential elections in 2007, 2013 then 2017, without success. Kenyatta's number 1 opponent therefore finally has his chances of gaining power, dubbed by his former opponent.
Uhuru Kenyatta has announced that he will not run for president. But while his vice-president hoped to take over, William Ruto was finally disavowed, both by Kenyatta, who considers the vice-president to be "uncontrollable", and by the political formation in power, the Jubilee Party.
Instead of supporting Ruto, the Jubilee Party decided to join the grand coalition Azimio, which brings together the former ruling party, the Wiper Democratic Movement, and Raila Odinga's Orange Democratic Movement. A decision pushed by Kenyatta, who advocates a “noble cause” which should make it possible to “unite Kenya” under the same banner.
Block the road to William Ruto
“Nations do not progress because of changes in presidents or political parties. It takes leadership, believing in our country, having a vision and showing courage to advocate unity,” said the Kenyan president during a meeting of the Orange Democratic Movement.
Uhuru Kenyatta criticizes his vice-president for his personal ambitions. “Ambition must be controlled,” he told members of his party when choosing to join the new grand coalition. Since 2018, the president and his second seem irreconcilable. Last August, the Kenyan vice-president was even blocked at the airport by Kenyatta who had prevented him from going to Uganda.
While relations have deteriorated over the years between the two ex-allies, Kenyatta has, on the other hand, initiated a peace process with Raila Odinga. The objective then was to preserve social peace in Kenya. An agreement had then, it seems, been sealed between the two men. So far, nothing has filtered from this agreement but, on February 11, Kenyatta publicly declared his support for Odinga.
It now remains to be seen what role Kenyatta will play in power in the coming months. Kenyatta urged many ministers in his government to remain in office and give up on their electoral ambitions next August. Does the president intend, thus, to impose a quota of ministers in the future government of Odinga?