The Raila Odinga advert; is it a case of too little too late?


Raila Odinga Nasa Presidential candidate (courtesy of Buzz Kenya)

A few weeks ago the Standard ran an article questioning whether the NASA coalition was broke or their coffers were running dry. Though I thought the article was a bit unrealistic and having no basic statistics to back it I actually became a little bit concerned because they had not released any advert.

However the article also went to great lengths by reaching out to the communication side of the campaign team which went ahead to confirm they were not out of funds but they were using their funds for strategy and making sure they have “guarded” their votes.

A few weeks after the story the team released an advert this seems to be hitting out at the administration. The advert which seems to be looking at the sudden rise in debt and a lot of other issues such as corruption and the rising cost of living which have been crippling the nation’s economy. Raila also goes on to criticize the Uhuru government for its PR tactics and what he calls “show business”.

His experience in politics is also played down in the advert and his role in politics for the last over 3 decades. He talks about detention to defending the rights of Kenyans and an oppression government. He also highlights his 2007 and 2013 to his stint in the NARC and Grand Coalition government where he played a pivotal role in delivering a greater economy and delivering a new constitution respectively.

The whole advert is well thought out and has been able to highlight the plight of Raila Odinga in the run up to being the president of the Republic of Kenya. The adverts do have a point and they do scream I want to be president of Kenya and I want you to make me realize this dream.

However there are a lot of red flags on this advert. For one it will be hard to get it to challenge the air time the PDU adverts have been running. Though it is a good attempt at making sure they have matched it up it because it will only be running for the next few weeks while the PDU adverts have been running for the last few months (since April).

The advert has also come at a time when most of the people have already tried to make sure they have given the right thing. The right thing would have been to run the adverts since Raila Amollo Odinga was declared the flag bearer of the NASA coalition. This would have been a better media strategy and making sure they have done a good job.

The time the advert has been running is also something they need to think about. If they could have moved the adverts from anytime to prime time then it will be a good job. They have been able to make sure they have done the show very well. The timing is very daunting but all in all they have released an advert which covers their ideology in the long run and they have done a good job there.



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