The war of words between Deputy President William Ruto and his tough competitor Raila Odinga has thrown social media users into a frenzy.
What started with a war of might between ODM’s Babu Owino and UDA’s Johnson Sakaja has now escalated to the top presidential competitors trading barbs on Twitter.
Yesterday, there was a standoff at the Jacaranda grounds after it emerged that both Babu and Sakaja had booked the same venue, at the same time for a rally. Police had to be deployed to ensure sanity was restored with Babu Owino backing down.
Shortly after the rally by the Ruto-led team, chaos were witnessed with goons captured on camera throwing stones at his entourage.
Ruto then blamed the attacks on Raila Odinga, calling him the “Lord of violence”.
“Mr Kitendawili, the Lord of violence has done it again. Hired innocent, desperate and jobless young people, victims of his sabotage of the big 4 jobs plan, to shed innocent blood in his eternal quest for power. What a shame on father’s day…freedom is coming on August 8,” Ruto wrote on Twitter.
Mr Kitendawili,the lord of violence, has done it again:Hired innocent,desperate & jobless young people,victims of his sabotage of the big4 jobs plan,to shed innocent blood in his eternal quest for power.What a shame on fathers day Mr father of violence.Freedom is coming Aug 9th.
— William Samoei Ruto, PhD (@WilliamsRuto) June 19, 2022
Raila did not waste any time and retaliated by calling Ruto Mr six months time in reference to failed promises he made to Kenyans.
Raila further termed Ruto’s remarks as a cry for sympathy votes, which according to him (Raila) has no room in the Kenyan politics.
“Mr Six months, for how long will you blame everyone for everything that befalls you. It’s not okay to be rudderless, clueless and plan-less. This country is slowly overcoming fraudsters and shortcuts that define your politics. Maliza uende. There is no room for sympathy votes!” Raila wrote.
Mr Six months, for how long will you blame everyone for everything that befals you. It’s not okay to be rudderless, clueless and plan-less.
This country is slowly overcoming fraudsters and shortcuts that define your politics. Maliza uende.
There is no room for sympathy votes!
— Raila Odinga (@RailaOdinga) June 19, 2022
Kenyans have expressed mixed reactions following the exchange of words, with each supporter pledging allegiance to their preferred presidential candidate.
Here are some reactions from Twitter:
Earth is Hard, Kipchumba Murkomen , Moses Kuria , and HNIB githeri of Itumbi felt more human than others like NASA and Hon Raila Odinga's supporters in 2017, even DP Ruto swore to crush Us , Today in Jacaranda grounds things are teargas and tears for Kenya Kwisha , Karma its🔥🔨 pic.twitter.com/OF9JbbQxgO
— Frank Mtetezi (ʙᴀꜰ)💧🇰🇪 (@FrankMtetezi) June 19, 2022
Late president Mwai Kibaki and President Uhuru Kenyatta have been opposition leaders before becoming president.
DP Ruto has never been an opposition leader and he cannot be the president
Raila Odinga has been an opposition leader and he will be the president.
— Anthony.M (@anthony08544175) June 20, 2022
Ruto must know that Raila has suicidal ruthless and very careless fans , if Mr. Odinga's fans were to get involved in those fracas at Jacaranda no rally would have taken place. Kenya kwanza planed for chaos to attract sympathy. https://t.co/t2BRjbmRk2
— Odek Achieng' (@OdekAchieng) June 20, 2022
Yaani it was a stage-managed attack! I just can’t believe desperation has reached this stage. Sad.
— Philip Etale (@EtalePhilip) June 19, 2022