The Star (Nairobi)

13 November 2012

Kenya: Kalonzo Can Be the Kingmaker

editorial

POLITICIANS are always suspicious of opinion polls and that is a mistake. Mitt Romney thought the polls were lying when they said Barrack Obama was leading in the presidential race. He commissioned his personal polls that told him he was ahead.

Mitt got a big shock on election day when he lost heavily. The same applies to Kenya. Uhuru Kenyatta and the G7 group have given Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka the cold shoulder, seemingly preferring Water minister Charity Ngilu to represent the Kamba vote in the coalition.

But according to the Infotrak survey released on Friday, Kalonzo commands 8.8 percent of the national vote, compared to Charity's 0.5 percent.

To make matters worse, Infotrak found that a Raila/Kalonzo combination would beat Uhuru/Ruto by 52 percent to 48 percent in a second round run-off. By not relying on research, the Uhuru camp has picked the wrong figurehead for Ukambani.

By the same token, Raila should be rushing to Kalonzo to secure him as his running mate for March 2013. Apart from Musalia Mudavadi who is presumably ruled out, other lesser running mates would make him lose in the second round to an Uhuru/ Ruto combo. Politicians ignore opinion polls at their peril.

Quote of the day: "An actress can only play a woman. I'm an actor, I can play anything." American actress Whoopi Goldberg was born on November 13, 1949

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