Uhuru, Mutua bromance fizzles out, avoid each other in Machakos
The blossoming bromance between President Uhuru Kenyatta and Machakos Governor Alfred Mutua appears to have hit the rocks.
Their brotherly high fives and hugs have suddenly been replaced by outright avoidance of each other as witnessed in President Uhuru Kenyatta’s Tuesday campaign tour in Machakos county.
Though Governor Mutua’s Maendeleo Chap Chap party has publicly endorsed President Kenyatta’s candidature, he was dropped out of the president’s entourage on Tuesday at the last minute in favour of Jubilee Party candidates.
This was despite an earlier assurance by the Presidential Strategic Communications Unit (PSCU) that the governor would accompany the president during the tour.
PSCU had stated: “In his expected tour of Machakos County, the Head of State will be flanked by Governor Alfred Mutua who abandoned the opposition to team up with Jubilee. They will also be joined by candidates vying for all elective positions in Machakos County on Maendeleo Chap Chap Party.”
On Tuesday however, the two leader campaigned separately 25 kilometres apart. Governor Mutua was in Muthwani ward, along Kangundo road, while the president addressed a rally in Kangundo town.
The president later commissioned the upgrading of Matuu-Ekalakala-Kanguku and Katulani-Kyasioni roads and the rehabilitation of the Yatta canal.
Governor Mutua, who thrives in development talk, was also a no show there. He was instead making his own pledges of constructing the Joska-Ndovoini-Muthwani road.
The governor has lately been running into hostile crowds in his campaigns, with his detractors accusing him of “auctioning his tribesmen”.
According to political scientist Joshua Kivuva, Governor Mutua’s no show during President Kenyatta’s tour could either be a genuine mix-up of campaign schedules or very strategic.
‘SEEN WITH THE ENEMY’
“Kangundo is very critical for governorship and for Mutua it meant at least not being seen with the ‘enemy’,” said Dr Kivuva.
Kangundo is home to Nasa’s Johnstone Muthama who recently fell out with co-principal Kalonzo Musyoka over Wavinya Ndeti’s candidature.
“This is the home turf of Uhuru’s biggest critic, Muthama, and I don’t think there is anyone who does not support Mutua who would have done so just because Uhuru was there,” explained Dr Kivuva.
Senator Muthama initially declared he would never support Wavinya Ndeti’s candidature, but later changed his mind and described her as better than Governor Mutua.
According to Dr Kivuva, the governor could have played safe so as not to be seen fighting either Jubilee or Nasa in the region.