Kenya: Why Do This to Baba? Nasa Supporters Ask Kalonzo

Holding up a green bible, Raila Odinga administered the oath himself - but without Kalonzo Musyoka, his running mate in the 2017 general election.
30 January 2018

Nairobi — Supporters of the National Super Alliance are a disappointed lot after Kalonzo Musyoka, leader of the Wiper party, failed to show up at Uhuru Park to be sworn-in as the People's Deputy President.

Many could be heard castigating him while describing him as a watermelon and one who cannot be politically trusted.

This is despite assurances that "all is well" by Opposition Chief Raila Odinga, who took his oath as the People's President, saying his co-principal is set to take a similar oath in the coming days.

"Kalonzo is with us, he will be sworn-in later," Odinga told the massive crowd but soon after that, a section of the crowd was seen walking away, even before he concluded his remarks.

Key leaders in NASA were also missing in action including co-principals Moses Wetangula and Musalia Mudavadi.

"Kalonzo is a coward, how can he do this to Baba (Raila Odinga) at the last minute?" one of the agitated supporters asked.

Another said, "we failed to go to work today so that we can witness this occasion but he has failed to come. We are very disappointed with him."

"Why has he done that, he has played some sort of game with us," Jane Okoth a resident of Kibera slums said.

She was at Uhuru Park by 7am but walked home disillusioned.

"I thought we will march to State House after this... " she said.

Thousands of supporters had camped at the historic ground of Uhuru Park since 6.30am, waiting for the leaders only for the ceremony to last less than 10 minutes.

Though some were excited that Odinga has been sworn-in, they insisted unity among NASA leaders was key if their ambitions were to be achieved.

"They need to be together more than before," Jackson Musyoka, a resident of Machakos said.

"How will we achieve reforms without unity?"

- How it was at Uhuru Park -

In the morning, police were withdrawn from the park, paving way for thousands of supporters who started trickling in at 6.30am.

Upon entry, the supporters were faced with their first task -to face off with a swarm of bees at the podium.

After almost two hours, the podium was cleared marking the beginning of the long wait for the NASA leaders.

At the end, the supporters walked slowly back to their homes and could be seen talking in low tones often speaking unkind words of the leaders who failed to attend the ceremony.

Odinga was sworn in as the People's President and not the President of the Republic of Kenya as earlier indicated by NASA Chief Executive Officer Norman Magaya.

- About Uhuru Park -

Uhuru Park, is the same venue where Kenya's new Constitution was promulgated in 2010.

On May 2014, the park hosted thousands of Kenyans who had gathered to welcome Odinga from the United States.

The Opposition chief had stayed in the US for one month and his supporters were eager to receive him.

They even gave him a report card on what transpired during his long stay, majorly on social media, through #BabaWhileYouWereAway hashtag.

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