Opposition Leader Raila Odinga is assembling a team dubbed Tsunami to push through the the referendum on the BBI report as he works on a new alliance.
Insiders say that Raila’s decision to have his party move to its newly acquired party headquarters in Lavington as he rocks Jubilee, Amani National Congress and Wiper from within while consolidating his ODM with state releasing billions of shillings from party funding is part of his 2022 presidential campaign strategy.
In Jubilee, Raila has taken a good share of MPs just like in ANC and Wiper. The Team Tsunami will also be his vehicle for the 2022 presidential election where he is expected to face off with William Ruto and a host of other candidates.
Akin to the Pentagon that Raila formed in the lead-up to the 2007 general election, Team Tsunami is having representation across the former eight provinces.
Besides campaigning for Raila, the team is also tasked with coming up with programmes to politically neutralise Amani National Congress leader Musalia Mudavadi and his Wiper counterpart Kalonzo Musyoka. The two leaders backed the ODM leader in the last general election but have since announced they will contest the presidency in 2022 and demanded Raila backs either of them in line with the pre-poll agreement the National Super Alliance had prior to the polls. Also marked for consignment to political dumpsite is Mike Sonko the city guv.
Members of the team were given a chance to address the meeting whose emcee was Suna East MP Junnet Mohamed.
In Coast, Team Tsunami will be led by Mombasa governor Hassan Joho. Joho was among the speakers at the Bomas of Kenya during the release of the BBI report.
The governor who is serving his final term is expected to marshal the coastal communities to back the BBI report and eventually vote for Raila in 2022. If Raila wins the presidency, Joho will be appointed a powerful minister.
In Western Kenya, Team Tsunami is being led by ODM’s deputy party leader and Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya.
The governor is also serving his final term and has been tasked to cut Mudavadi’s influence in the populous region.
He is expected to lead the campaigns for the adoption of the BBI report in the region and eventually to rally Luhyas behind Raila’s candidature. Oparanya is also angling for a senior government position if Raila is elected president. As things stand, Ketraco CEO Fernandez Barasa is likely to succeed Oparanya as Kakamega governor. Barasa is gaining ground and is the latest entrant in the race. His family and politicians in the county are firmly in his camp.
In Central Kenya, Team Tsunami will be led by Kirinyaga governor Anne Waiguru. Other members in this team include nominated MP Maina Kamanda and Nyeri Town MP Ngunjiri Wambugu. The team is tasked with cutting Ruto’s influence in the region ahead of the 2022 general election.
In Ukambani, Team Tsunami will be led by Machakos governor Alfred Mutua, his Makueni counterpart Kivutha Kibwana and Kitui’s Charity Ngilu.
Mutua and Ngilu joined Raila during the Kibra by-election campaigns where they tried to rally Kambas in the region to back the ODM candidate. Kambas in Kibra however are now demanding to see the fruits of voting for Imran saying that Ngilu and Mutua should have first sat down with Raila and bargained for the community to get the position of chairman of Kibra CDF in exchange of support.
Kibwana has also declared support for Raila. All the three governors have fallen out with Kalonzo and are expected to campaign against him should he contest the presidency.
If Kalonzo does not contest, and backs Ruto, the three leaders will be tasked with marshalling the Kamba nation to vote for Raila a tall order if not impossible task.
In the vast North Eastern region, Team Tsunami will be led by former deputy speaker Maalim Mohamed. The team is tasked with containing Garissa Township MP Duale who is Ruto’s pointman in the region.
In Kalenjinland, the team will be led by Cherangany MP Joshua Kutuny. The MP was among leaders who joined Raila during the Kibra by-election campaigns.
In Gusiiland, Raila has picked Senator Sam Ongeri and Interior cabinet secretary Fred Matiang’i to lead the team and they will be joined by Governor Evans Ongwae, who is also serving his final term.
In Maasailand the team will be led by Kajiado Central MP Elijah Memusi and a host of other leaders.
Other politicians are Baringo senator Gideon Moi and Jubilee secretary-general Raphael Tuju.