When Aisha Jumwa sang ‘Salama! Salama! Jubilee!’ during a NASA rally in 2017, nobody would have thought that she would bitterly fall out with ODM, a party that is believed to be her home and embedded in her DNA, a few months later.
But this is Kenya and there is nothing unpredictable as Kenyan politics. Nobody predicted the infamous March 9, 2o18 handshake between ODM leader Raila Odinga and his brother Uhuru Kenyatta. There is a saying that there are no permanent enemies in politics.
After the handshake, DP William Ruto sensed danger and switched to attack mode, going on a recruitment spree. Raila’s allies who felt they had been left out of the handshake deal were Ruto’s first target. And just like that, Aisha Jumwa, Msambweni MP Suleiman Dori and Mohammed Ali Nyali switched their allegiance to the hustler nation.
Ruto used the handshake to make inroads into the coast, a region considered to be Raila’s stronghold. Jumwa and Dori publicly announced that they were supporting Ruto’s 2022 presidential bid.
ODM being ODM decided to crack the whip. They expelled one of their most energetic and vocal members for gross misconduct. Dori was spared after he asked for forgiveness.
ODM did nothing to Migori governor Okoth Obado who dilly-dallied with Ruto and hosted him in various functions in Nyanza in the aftermath of his murder charges in court.
Did the party just hate women?
Ruto used the expulsion to wage war on Raila, saying the former PM wanted Jumwa to kneel down and worship him.
Jumwa’s expulsion was suspended by the Political Parties Tribunal after she appealed it. Things have not been good for her especially after she declared her interest in Kilifi gubernatorial seat in 2022. She said all politicians deserted her.
Later, she hit the media for all the wrong reasons after a confrontation with ODM Secretary General Edwin Sifuna during the burial of Mombasa Deputy Governor’s father.
She went under the radar except for the Inua Mama Functions she has been attending.
But boom! From nowhere ODM decided to revive her career. On Tuesday, the orange party tweeted that Jumwa had ditched tanga tanga and declared her support for Imran Okoth, ODM’s candidate in Kibra by-elections.
ODM deleted the tweet a few minutes later because it was not true. Jumwa confirmed that she had not endorsed Imran and, she was nowhere near ODM’s Parliamentary Group meeting at County Hall.
ODM has been left embarrassed after the blunder. Ruto’s digital team is fronting a narrative that Raila’s party is afraid of the by-elections, they may be right.
Jumwa later attended a rally for MacDonald Mariga in the company of the DP. It was big news.
A friend of mine has described Jumwa as the hottest woman in parliament at the moment, you can’t argue with that and it is all thanks to ODM.