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Raila makes light of ‘mganga’ remarks by rivals, says it means he’s a medic

By George Njunge | September 16th 2021

ODM leader Raila Odinga arrives at PCEA in Ngecha Limuru where he was welcomed by Limuru Mp and Kiambu governor James Nyoro where he attended the funeral of Grace Muthoni who is a sister to George Gichini an ODM parliamentary seat aspirant in Limuru. [George Njunge, Standard]

ODM leader Raila Odinga is slowly seeking to turn the tables on his opponents’ use of the word ‘mganga’ to belittle him.

Raila embraced the tag, saying it does not, after all, mean what his rivals, especially Deputy President William Ruto and his allies, intend.

This is the second time Raila has talked about the reference in a growing trend among top politicians to turn bad situations into advantages.

Ruto previously embraced the wheelbarrow, converting it to a symbol of his party the United Democratic Alliance, while Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka also made light of his ‘watermelon’ tag.

“Mganga is a (Kiswahili) word for a medic, and if they say that I’m a mganga then it’s well with me. There’s a different between a witch doctor and a medic,” said Raila in Ngecha, Kiambu County, yesterday.

He spoke during the burial of Grace Muthoni, sister of ODM parliamentary aspirant for Limuru constituency George Gichini.

The former prime minister supported the clergy’s ban on politics in the church. “I welcome the decision to ban us from politicking in church as we can do it elsewhere,” said Raila outside the PCEA church after the burial service.

CAS Rachael Shebesh also supported the clergy’s move to “sanitize” the church.

On the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI), Raila said the proposals were not meant to benefit President Uhuru Kenyatta or himself, but had promised big gains to all counties.

“Kiambu lost big by the failure of BBI to pass. You lost a lot of money. BBI was meant to make Kenyans equal in distribution of wealth,” he said.

Raila said BBI envisioned a trickle-down economy that would have seen all Kenyans enjoy the national cake equally, adding that it was also meant to unite the country.

“I’m optimistic that reggae will be back soon to benefit Kenyans,” Raila said

He promised to look into residents’ grievances on insecurity and lack of a market.

Kiambu Governor James Nyoro said Mt Kenya region will only support a presidential candidate who would address the region’s interests.

Others present included Limuru MP Peter Mwathi and area MCA Joel Muhia.

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