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ARE BBI RALLIES A POLITICAL BATTLEGROUND?

When deputy President William Ruto and his team changed tune to support the BBI talks and report, the ODM syndicate that was running the show oblivious of its handshake partner jubilee party was shocked to the core. Little did the orange party and its leadership expect such a turn around from a group they had christened the “The BBI opposers” and future opposition party.

The ODM party had literary created an imaginary divide ahead of the expected plebiscite to portray the “us against them” thought-line in the national psyche and use it to confine team tangatanga group (allied to DP Ruto) to the opposition. In a completely unexpected turnaround, DP Ruto’s team swang their weight behind the BBI meetings and swore to take part in all future rallies starting with the Mombasa meeting expected on Saturday 25th hence putting the ODM gerrymandering to a stop.

The thought of DP William Ruto attending the ongoing BBI meetings as the President’s deputy and top government representative (since BBI is national project) didn’t auger well with the ODM mandarins who had politicized the process and filled county secretariats with their stalwarts leaving out partners like Jubilee, KANU, ANC, FK parties. The fear in the orange party arguments is what protocol shall be observed, who shall address the rallies last between DP William Ruto and ODM party leader and President Uhuru Kenyatta’s handshake partner Raila Amolo Odinga.

The panic in the ODM camp is evident with party leaders who had unlawfully assumed positions of the BBI secretariat threatening to vet who to allow in future, as DP Ruto allied leaders tell off their ODM counterparts reminding them that they have no capacity to stop others from assembling or joining the rallies.

Another valid argument advanced by the Ruto friendlies it that there are no BBI copies for the citizen to read before contributing their views, which is very true. Assertions by Kakamega county senator Cleofas Malala that over 5000 copies of the document were availed at Bukhungu were outrightly false and fodder from ODM party propaganda machinery.

The ferrying of people in buses to meeting places as happened at Bukhungu in Kakamega county has not gone down well with non ODM leaders who question the selection criteria used to choose who to attend and why government funds are being used in questionable ways. They further ague that the BBI debate should be taken to the people other than people being ferried to selected stadia by a party suspected to have a hidden agenda and recommendations for the report.

As experienced in Kakamega county based social media forums and talk joints, the debate is on “who to see to get a ticket to the coming Mombasa county BBI meeting”. The question is “Why should the ODM party struggle to ferry its diehards across the country to attend meeting after meeting yet these meetings are meant for the people of the hosting county?”. Are these party supporters ferried into other counties to influence a certain outcome of the debate yet every region has its unique challenges that need to be captured in the recommendations?.

After the perceived opposer of the BBI train joined the circus, the ODM party has gone back to the drawing board since they cant lock them out of the national debate and rallies which shall go against the BBI spirit of cohesion. Since ODM is perfect at creating enemies and opponents, they are at a cross road not knowing how to deal with the absent enemy/BBI opposer, more-so, how to address DP Ruto because their politicized rallies have lost meaning.

The entrance of DP Ruto and team can be summarized as “taking war to the ODM brigade and snatching the politicized BBI baby “. The winner of this war is for us to guess as events occur in real time. Finally, to quote the Ikolomani MP Hon. Benard Masaka Shinali, “NOBODY IS OPPOSING THE BBI REPORT, AND NOBODY SHOULD SPEAK AWAY FROM THE ONGOING RALLIES AND MEETINGS BUT FROM WITHIN.”

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