Cracks have continued to emerge in Cord, if the sentiments by Bungoma senator Moses Wetang’ula during an interview on KTN are anything to go by.
Wetang’ula said on Thursday night that ODM leader Raila Odinga should not vie for the presidency in 2017 general election.
The senator, who is a co-principal in the opposition coalition, further attacked Raila and said the large crowds he attracts at rallies cannot translate into votes.
The Cord leader will conclude his tours of Western today with a rally in Kakamega, after successful meetings in Vihiga and Busia counties.
Raila has been holding rallies to counter forays by Jubilee after the steam for his bid appeared deflated by the exit of his stalwarts from the region among them his secretary general Ababu Namwamba.
“It is now time for our brother Raila with all his dynamism and support that he enjoys to support a fresh team that is able to deliver,” Wetang’ula told KTN.
At the interview, Wetang’ula said the time has come for Raila to bring in fresh ideas and people that will support the party without losing hope in the process.
“People vote for you unapita unaibiwa, unapita unaibiwa wanaanza kufikiria ya kwamba hata tukipigiwa kura pengine zitaibiwa (people vote for you, the votes are stolen and they start to think that even if they vote for you again the same thing will happen) it will be the same thing,” he said.
Wetang’ula said the coalition should change tact in the manner they carry out some activities and present to Kenyans some freshness within Cord.
“It is better to be part of a winning team than to lose alone, it is better to be part of a wining team than to insist that it must be you and end up not winning,” Wetang’ula said.
“I believe that with the dynamism that we have as a coalition, capacity to campaign and attraction we have wherever we go one must bear in mind that crowds are not votes so we have to go much deeper than that,” Wetang’ula said.
And in a quick rejoinder, ODM director of communications Philip Etale said via twitter that it was time Wetangula supported Raila fully and not back down.
“People want to ride on Raila’s back to get to where they want. When asked to reciprocate, they start silly narratives. Not now,” he said on Friday.
Etale twitted to Wetangula and said: “Raila will be on the ballot paper in 2017. That is fact. Just know that sir”.
On April 12, Raila indicated that he does not consider himself the automatic flag bearer of the coalition.
Both Raila’s co-principals in Cord, Kalonzo Musyoka and Wetangula, believe that they should be the presidential candidate in 2017.
But Raila’s supporters consider him the obvious choice.
The Star established that Kalonzo has been sending emissaries — especially Raila’s closest allies — to dissuade him from running since they say his candidacy may not be supported by majority of Kenyans.
It is not clear why Kalonzo believes Raila is unlikely to defeat Uhuru.
Raila has all but declared, while not officially throwing his hat into the ring. Kalonzo has not formally declared, though Wiper is pushing him. Wetang’ula has declared he’s in the race.