Boniface Mwangi: Why Azimio lost the elections
Activist cum politician Boniface Mwangi has divulged the reasons why Azimio la Umoja lost in the presidential elections.
Claiming that Raila Odinga and his deputy Martha Karua had a steady track record as brave patriots who had consistently fought and worked for a better Kenya since the 1990s, Mwangi said, “They represented hope for real change led by liberators, promising to wage war against corruption and to clean up Kenyan politics by condemning all the rogue elements to the dustbin of history.”
Reminiscing the times Karua came to his rescue and aid when he had challenges, Mwangi said he could not fail to support her bid.
Noting that Azimio politicians accused each other of slacking on their jobs, Mwangi added, “Azimio’s overconfidence and grossly underestimating our opponent cost us the presidential election.”
Saying that the Azimio fraternity assumed the victory was theirs because President Uhuru Kenyatta endorsed and actively campaigned for Raila and Martha, the former journalist noted, “We failed to do the hard work of strategizing, organizing, and mobilizing our base to come out and vote, especially in our strongholds.”
Claiming that the party failed to protect its agents from the temptation of easy bribes from the opponents, Mwangi suggested, “We allowed them to be compromised at the polling stations. We also failed to protect our votes because we had too much faith that the IEBC would conduct a credible, free and fair election.”
Clarifying that President Kenyatta did not pick Karua as Odinga’s running mate, rather Raila campaigned hard for Azimio to pick Karua as his running mate.
“Many will recall that her candidature was well received within the country and across the borders. It was a breath of fresh air and Kenya was well on its way to having its first female Deputy President, not as a token DP but one with an undeniable and solid track record,” he explained.
Adding that President Kenyatta being Azimio’s chairman also cost them, with Kenyans believing that the two candidates would be a continuation of Uhuru’s presidency, Mwangi points out that made the two leaders be branded ‘projects.’
“Raila and Martha had a good manifesto, which our team failed to sell effectively. The secretariat ignored feedback on how to make the campaign resonate with Kenyans. Politics is local. Azimio failed to organize locally.”
Saying that the coalition’s best ideas were shelved in favour of those tabled by a few people, Mwangi added, “Honest feedback was taken as negative criticism and those who offered were ostracised or seen as possible moles while those out-of-touch with realities were the ones whose ideas that were carried.”