Raila Odinga’s Framed Political Brand Image and the Voters Reasoned Actions in Presidential Elections

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Daystar University, School of Communication


Branding is a key element for any politician who wants to excel in their quest to win an election because voters tend to identify with a political brand that favours them. Raila Odinga is a brand with a huge political following and over the years he has been a key contestant in general elections even though he has not succeeded to rise to presidency. This paper sought to analyze his brand image, the rivals branding of his candidature in both the social and legacy media; and the effect all these had on voting behavior during elections. The study was anchored on two theories: the framing theory and the theory of reasoned action. Based on framing theory, this study assumed that there were pre-existing frames that were inherent in the brand ‘Raila Odinga’, which were shaped by both the media and his campaign team. To this end, these frames were key in determining the voters reasoned actions during presidential elections. The study was limited to Murang’a and Homa-Bay counties and it adopted a descriptive design. Questionnaire and key informant interview guide were used to collect data. The study sampled 384 respondents in each of the two counties;oma Bay County had a response rate of 315 (82%) while Muranga County had 357 (93%). The findings indicated that Raila Odinga was easily recognised across the country and that his rivals used his easily recognisable brand to frame negative messages during the run-up to the 2017 presidential elections. Region and politics of belonging played a role in the framing of Raila Odinga’s brand image. Central Kenya residents were more likely to believe the messages spread by Raila Odinga’s competitors compared to the Western Kenya. The study also established that whereas voters in Homa-Bay did not take keen interest in Raila Odinga’s coverage in the media; a fairly significant percentage of Muranga voters were keen on the same with only 50.10% stating that his coverage was unimportant to them compared to 75.90 percent in Homa Bay.


Master of Arts in Communication


Raila Odinga, Political Brand Image, Voters Reasoned Actions, Presidential Elections


Mumo, C. W. (2020). Raila Odinga’s Framed Political Brand Image and the Voters Reasoned Actions in Presidential Elections. Daystar University, School of Communication: Nairobi