The exchange of words between former NASA leaders has escalated, with Kalonzo pulling no punches against Raila Odinga accusing him of being an “extremely untrustworthy” coalition partner.
In a hard-hitting statement on Monday, the Wiper party leader said his ODM counterpart does not mean well for the country and cannot be trusted with the presidency.
According to Kalonzo, the former Premier “has cast himself as an extremely self-centered man who will get into power by hook or crook”.
“How can Kenyans trust such a man to be their President? For a man who cannot keep his word while in opposition, how will he keep it while in power as President? Who will trust him?” Kalonzo posed.
Adding: “A leader who cannot keep his word is a great danger to the people he rules. Once elected, he may even refuse to leave office by changing the Constitution to become a life president.”
Kalonzo also noted that there was no guarantee Raila will not abandon President Uhuru Kenyatta and join his rivals before the 2022 elections.
The Wiper leader at the same time sensationally claimed Mr Odinga negotiated a handshake with President Kenyatta to get trappings of power.
On Raila’s Saturday declaration that he would not endorse any of his former National Super Alliance (NASA) colleagues for the presidency, Kalonzo said the ODM leader’s political clout is coming to an end and that he won’t survive without the support of the NASA colleagues.
“Firing of blanks will not help to boost his dwindling political fortunes. What has been escaping his mind, however, is the fact that his so-called national popularity has mainly been emanating from the goodwill and support of the regional kingpins who have been coalescing around him, believing he can be trusted,” Kalonzo said in a statement by his campaign secretariat.
Last week, while ruling out NASA leaders for the presidency, Raila accused the regional kingpins of abandoning him at the hour of need during his swearing-in as the People’s President.
“When we were going for the swearing-in, in Nairobi they refused. They switched off their phones and they were shivering due to fear. They now want me to give them the mantle by supporting them,” Raila said in Homa Bay.
Added: “Can I give them the mantle? I won’t give them because they demonstrated their cowardice.”
But Kalonzo on Sunday explained his absence during the mock swearing-in saying he was acting in the interest of the country’s peace and to safeguard his future in politics.
“I don’t believe in these political debts. I did what I did to make this country better. As a senior counsel, how would I have participated in a mock, illegal, and unconstitutional oath? I would have disqualified myself,” said Kalonzo.
The former vice president warned Raila to stop using his political footsoldiers to fight him.
“If he continues, we’ll expose him. I am telling Kenyans that I don’t need anybody’s endorsement. I only need God to endorse me,” he said.