NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 8 – President Mwai Kibaki on Friday disclosed that he has a preferred successor, even though he has not been seen openly campaigning for anyone.
The President who spoke in Mombasa during a peace forum for lawmakers says he knows what kind of a leader Kenyans want and that is the person he is backing.
“If you hear that I’m not campaigning for anything don’t thing that I don’t believe in anything, I know the kind of project that we want in Kenya and I know that it does not do anybody any good to preach a different thing,” he told the meeting which was attended by among others Prime Minister Raila Odinga and Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka.
He caused laughter when he said “don’t think I don’t believe in anything.” Curiously, the slogan for Uhuru Kenyatta’s The National Alliance party is ‘I believe’.
President Kibaki last month denied that he had endorsed Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka as his successor after a series of contradictory messages.
Speaking in Machakos on his way to Kitui for a tree planting ceremony, the President appeared to vouch for Kalonzo. “It is your time now. I have worked with him for quite sometime now and know he is a capable leader. What are you waiting for now?’, the President said amid cheers from Machakos town residents.
More recently, there has been speculation that the President had developed a soft spot for Deputy Prime Minister Musalia Mudavadi who decamped from Raila Odinga’s ODM to the United Democratic Forum.
The UDF was formed last year by Professor Nick Wanjohi and other close Kibaki allies. Wanjohi is the private secretary to President Kibaki
During the Madaraka Day national celebration on June 1, Mudavadi was the one who welcomed the President to deliver the keynote speech.
On Thursday, Mudavadi represented the Head of State at a high level State function, the fifth world’s accreditation day celebrations at the KICC.
The recent series of high level briefs by Mudavadi only serve to amplify the notion that he is being groomed to inherit the reins of power once President Kibaki retires, a suggestion he has flatly dismissed.
Mudavadi dismissed as baseless claims that he was President Kibaki’s project saying the Head of State has the liberty to choose anyone to represent him at any function
Mudavadi, Uhuru Kenyatta and Eldoret North MP William Ruto were among several MPs absent at the Conference.