Swearing In: The Aftermath
On 30th January 2018, the National Super Alliance (NASA) went ahead with their planned ‘swearing in’ of Raila Amolo Odinga as the people’s president. Before a mammoth crowd at the historical Uhuru Park, the NASA co-principal and the coalition’s presidential candidate during the disputed and nullified 8th August 2017 took oath of office to serve as the country’s president. It was a momentous and unprecedented occasion that has been rarely witnessed in the modern history of global politics. Ruaraka Member of Parliament (MP) TJ Kajwang’, who is a High Court counsel, administered the oath in a move had already be labeled as treason by the government. The Ruaraka MP was assited by Miguna Miguna who is also a counsel and former gubernatorial candidate for Nairobi County.
However, conspicuously missing from the jubilated and cheerful crowd was his running mate and supposed vice president, Kalonzo Musyoka. Joining the Wiper leader in giving the event a wide berth were Senator Moses Wetangula who is the leader of Ford Kenya and Musalia Mudavadi who is the leader of Amani National Congress (ANC). The absence of the three NASA co-principals raised political eyebrows as it was not clear why they skipped such an important event. While the major television networks such as Citizen TV, NTV and KTN had been shut down by the government earlier in the day, some of them managed to stream live the event.
Government Crack Down
Following the inauguration of NASA leader, Raila Amolo Odinga as the people’s president on 30th January 2018, the government through the newly appointed Cabinet Secretary for Internal Security, Fred Matiangi retairated that it will take decisive action against those who facilitated and played a key role in the treasonous event. This was followed by the arrest of MP TJ Kajwang’ on 31st January for his role in the swearing in of Mr. Odinga. He was picked up as he was leaving Milimani Law Court where he had attended a case hearing. The plain clothed officers drove him to Directorate of Criminal Investigations for questioning. He was released on 1st January on bond.
Following the swearing no-shows, many Kenyans especially those affiliated to NASA including politicians and community leaders roundly criticized the co-principals who gave the swearing in a wide terming their actions as cowardly. One such politician, Miguna Miguna, also dared Matiangi to arrest him for his role in the inauguration. However, the four co-principals held a joint press briefing on February 1st to assure supporters of their unity, while condemning the continued shutdown of major television networks by the government.