During the August 9 General Election, COTU boss Francis Atwoli backed ODM leader Raila Odinga’s 2022 presidential candidature.
“Ruto will try, although he will get around 6 or 5.5 million votes. Raila on the other side will win this election by 8.5 million votes,” Atwoli said on August 1, 2022.
However, addressing mourners during the burial of former COTU chairman Rajab Mwondi in Vihiga, Atwoli said he warned Raila that he would not be president.
He said he told ODM deputy party leader Wycliffe Oparanya that William Ruto would succeed the then outgoing Head of State Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta.
“Na niliambia Oparanya tukiwa Tamarind kuwa hii kura hatushindi. Niliwaambia mapema. Wanajua sio kwamba hawajui,” Atwoli said at an event attended by Azimio luminaries.
He further revealed that Raila had all the government machinery to secure the presidency but failed to do so due to poor logistics and planning.
Atwoli, who recently dumped Raila’s Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition for President William Ruto’s Kenya Kwanza further accused Raila of shortchanging him.
He revealed that he decided to work with President Ruto after Raila nominated ODM chairman John Mbadi to the National Assembly, a seat that had been reserved for COTU as per the pre-election agreement.
In the results announced by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), William Ruto beat Raila with 7.1 million votes against 6.9 million votes.
Before shifting his allegiance to Kenya Kwanza, Atwoli who was a vocal supporter of Raila even asked William Ruto’s neighbors to cut trees because he might hang himself once Raila is declared president.