Ever since the March 2018 handshake between Raila Odinga and Uhuru Kenyatta on the steps of Harambee House, there has been a cessation of hostilities, but if this week’s events are anything to go by, then it seems what is happening is simply just a ceasefire that will be prone to minor violations from troops on both sides every now and then as we move closer towards the elections.
The two tore into each other during their appearance on Citizen TV’s morning show Daybreak, which was being hosted by Trevor Ombija. The other guests were Machakos governor Alfred Mutua, and Soi MP Caleb Kositany who was linking up with them via internet.
Otiende Amollo was trying to explain what makes Raila Odinga a formidable presidential candidate, when he mentioned that Raila has been repeatedly winning elections. This seemed to have rubbed Wamatangi the wrong way, and when he got a chance to speak, he rubbished Amollo’s assertion.
The exchange began to quickly turn into a protracted spat, as Otiende also shot back, bringing up the historic Supreme Court ruling that annulled the election results, and the contentious IEBC servers that are believed to have been compromised, and which the electoral body has, to date, failed to offer for an independent audit.
At this point, a visibly stunned Kositany was lost for words, and had to hit the back pedal, preferring to seat back and watch the two men, who he had earlier been tussling with, go after each other.
Even as the handshake grows, and continues to settle into the hearts of the participants, it has always been clear that there remains core issues that are still unresolved, and which the architects of the handshake struggle to contain, or perhaps to sweep under the carpet. Such include injustices meted out on opposition strongholds during the post election violence, alleged destruction of Kikuyu businesses by opposition supporters, and the ever emotive election irregularities, which, once again, reared its ugly head, when Wamatangi sat down to debate with Otiende Amollo.
There have been some half-hearted efforts to try and compensate victims of police excesses, such as the state appointment of Musando’s widow, and recognition of baby Pendo’s parents.
The recent dramatic revelation by Nairobi ex-governor Mike Sonko that the vandalism witnessed in Nairobi was stage-managed has also gone a little way into placating the victims of this violence.