Kalonzo Musyoka returns after 10 weeks in Germany

Mr Musyoka left the country on October 11 to be with his ailing wife, Pauline.

Nasa co-principal Kalonzo Musyoka. FILE PHOTO | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

IN SUMMARY

  • The coalition boycotted the October 26 repeat poll after successfully petitioning the August 8 election.
  • Mr Odinga has stuck to his guns and this week vowed to go on with the oath in the New Year.

National Super Alliance (Nasa) co-principal Kalonzo Musyoka is Thursday expected to declare his stand on the swearing-in of opposition leader Raila Odinga in his first public appearance after a 10-week stay in Germany.

Mr Musyoka, who arrived back in the country on Wednesday, is scheduled to visit the family of his closest ally, former Kitui West MP Francis Nyenze, who was buried last week.

Mr Musyoka left the country on October 11 to be with his ailing wife, Pauline, with whom he returned.

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Nasa leaders who did not want to be named discussing internal matters said they were excited by his arrival and were looking forward to hearing his position on the best way forward.

POLL PETITION
His absence from the political scene has sparked debate within and outside the opposition ranks over his dedication to the Nasa cause.

He left just a day after he and Nasa leader Raila Odinga withdrew from the October 26 repeat election.

“Our country is at a pivotal point in history where, once again, we find ourselves in the valley of decision; this time whether to ascend to a new era of true democracy through electoral integrity and legitimacy or descend further into the abyss of electoral malpractice and injustice, by accepting and moving on,” Mr Musyoka said in a Christmas message sent to newsrooms.

Mr Musyoka’s arrival comes at an equally pivotal time for the Nasa coalition, which has been facing intense pressure from within to go on with the swearing-in of Mr Odinga as the peoples’ president — as a form of protest against what opposition supporters believe was a stolen victory on August 8.

UHURU LEGITIMACY
The coalition boycotted the October 26 repeat poll after successfully petitioning the August 8 election and has since vowed not to recognise President Uhuru Kenyatta, saying it had won the first poll.

The planned swearing-in ceremony has been postponed twice — first on November 28 when Mr Kenyatta took his oath and then on Jamhuri Day on December 12 — to the disappointment of Nasa supporters.

Mr Musyoka’s first public appearance on Thursday — after he arrived at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport aboard a Qatar Airways flight at 2am — will be watched by many from within and outside the coalition.

SICK WIFE
Mr Musyoka and his ailing wife Pauline were accompanied by one of their sons Klein and Mr Musyoka’s sister-in-law Jane Muasya.

Other than security aides and drivers, there were no politicians or supporters to receive them at the airport.

A close family source who requested anonymity out of respect for the former Vice-President’s desire to keep his wife’s sickness out of the public limelight, said Mrs Musyoka was in a jovial mood after the eight-hour flight.

“Mama is okay and was discharged from hospital where she has been since October.

"They didn’t want to attract too much public attention and she’s currently resting at home,” the source said.

NASA RESISTANCE

Mr Musyoka’s absence from the political scene has seen significant developments in the opposition camp, chief among them being the formation of a wing of Nasa dubbed the National Resistance Movement, soon after the October repeat presidential poll.

Mr Odinga has stuck to his guns and this week vowed to go on with the oath in the New Year.

Contrary to reports that the ceremony will be carried out by a retired judge, Mr Odinga said their plan was to have the ceremony presided over by an ordained commissioner of oaths.

Whatever happens after the swearing-in, he argued, will not be Nasa’s fault, as they had opened their arms for dialogue only to be given a contempt card.

Mr Odinga said they are campaigning for electoral justice, police reforms, judicial independence, restructuring and strengthening devolution and the restructuring of the Executive.

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