In Summary
  • The heckling has been viewed as setting a wrong precedence in the campaigns ahead of the August 8 General Election.
  • Analyst Barrack Muluka argues that the DP’s brand of politics was his main undoing.

The heckling of Deputy President William Ruto at a rally he attended alongside President Uhuru Kenyatta in Kisumu last week has left local leaders torn along party lines and trading accusations as to the cause.

But they all condemned the incident, which has been viewed as setting a wrong precedence in the campaigns ahead of the August 8 General Election.

RUTO SPEECH

While leaders from the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) accused Mr Ruto of provoking the public, their Jubilee counterparts downplayed the jeering that only targeted the DP, terming it an isolated case.

Mr Ruto was jeered by a crowd donning red Jubilee t-shirts in Kisumu, where he and President Kenyatta were launching a brewery, forcing him to give up the microphone.

BY-ELECTION
Mr Peter Okello, a commentator on Nyanza politics, said Jubilee needed to deploy its team of national officials including Mr David Murathe and Mr Caleb Kositany, who nearly delivered the North Ugenya MCA seat to Jubilee through Steve Mwanga in the by-election conducted on August 2015.

During the polls, Mr Mwanga secured 1,672 votes against Mr Shabban Omar of ODM who got 3,365 votes.

“The current team of Jubilee leaders campaigning in Nyanza are not good grassroots mobilisers.

"There is a need to identify people like Mwanga to lead the campaigns under the auspices of Murathe and Kositany,” he said.

PRETENSE
Mr Mwanga is remembered for giving current Siaya Senator James Orengo a run for his money in the 2007 parliamentary contest in Ugenya.

But Jubilee nominated Senator Joy Gwendo said: “Shouting Nasa while donning Jubilee T-shirts or jeering the DP and saying you like the President is like telling your children you like them but hate their mother. Isn’t that pretentious?”

ADVISERS

ODM National chairman John Mbadi said: “The DP needs to ask himself why he is being heckled.

"He needs to change the way he conducts his politics, especially his speech. I think his advisers need to work on his speech very well, both written and off the cuff.”

“He needs to appreciate his position as the DP. The status of that position requires that he is respected.

"But you will only be respected when you show respect to yourself and to others,” Mr Mbadi added.

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