Nasa principals to meet over Wiper disquiet

Irene Githinji and Mercy Mwai @PeopleDailyKe

National Super Alliance Coalition (Nasa) principals will meet on Monday to discuss the discontent affiliate Wiper Party has raised on sharing of parliamentary leadership slots.

Nasa co-principal Musalia Mudavadi’s Amani National Congress (ANC) has also raised similar concerns of being outfoxed by Raila Odinga’s Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) in the sharing of parliamentary positions.

The monday meeting comes came even as pressure mounted on Raila to convene a meeting to remove Suna East MP Junet Mohamed as the Opposition Whip and Homa Bay county MP Gladys Wanga as a commissioner in the Parliamentary Service Commission (PSC).

It is emerging that ODM party members are not happy with the manner the two have been conducting themselves since appointment to the said positions.

In particular, MPs considered senior in ODM are pushing for removal of the two to be replaced by nominees from Kalonzo Musyoka’s Wiper party. But separately, Nasa co-principal Moses Wetang’ula said Wiper would be given an opportunity to raise its dissatisfaction on the matter after which their concerns would be fully addressed.

He said the Opposition is intact and pushing on with its agenda to consult on the way forward. Wetang’ula, also the Ford Kenya Party leader, said the issue of sharing of parliamentary slots is still being deliberated upon by affiliate parties but did not delve into details. He spoke yesterday in Nairobi when he met the Ford Kenya Women League, which also included those who vied for the various posts in last year’s General Election but lost.

His remarks came a day after Wiper party announced that it had put off the planned People’s Assembly forum that was expected to take place coming Sunday following unresolved dispute with its affiliate party, ODM, over sharing of parliamentary leadership slots.

It is, however, understood that senior ODM MPs are behind Wiper Party’s decline to launch the People’s Assembly in Ukambani in order for the party to push Raila to allow changes within ODM. But it emerged that MPs had agreed to have Wiper take the slot as opposed to any other member within ODM to avoid Raila from rewarding one of his close allies who may not be friendly to them.

Junet’s ouster is said to have been agreed upon by majority of members because he sidelined them in appointment of key positions in House committees. Junet is also being accused of bragging among his colleagues, much to their chargin, that he was superior and closer to Raila, hence his appointment to the position.

“Some senior members of ODM have been left out; he gave the position to these young people so that they can protect him but this will not work at all,” said a Wiper MP. For Wanga, party members are opposed to her candidature as a PSC commissioner on grounds that they want fresh blood.

But setting the record straight over postponement of the Machakos meeting, Wetang’ula who is also the Bungoma Senator explained that preparations had not be completed and had to be pushed forward to allow time for a big meeting that has a visible outcome. And despite rescheduling of the Machakos meeting, he said that all planned Nasa activities remained firmly in place.

Some members of Nasa had expressed concern over the picking of Suba South MP, John Mbadi for the Minority Leader’s position and Junet’s Minority Whip slot. Deputy Minority Whip is Kiminini MP, Chris Wamalwa while the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) chairman’s position went to Ugunja’s Opiyo Wandayi. ODM also captured the Public Accounts Committee (PIC) through Mvita MP Abdulswamad Nassir.

On Wednesday, ODM’s Migori Senator was elected the County Public Accounts and Investments Committee chairman in the Senate. At the same time, Wetang’ula maintained Nasa’s resolve to engage with President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto.

He said President Uhuru and Ruto must climb down the pedestal and talk, saying neither Jubilee or Nasa could independently deal with issues the country was facing, particularly governance and electoral justice.

“Nasa appreciates fully the need to engage as a country. Our leader has said he is ready, willing and available to revisit constitutional structure… as we are, it is not possible to shake hands with someone with a clenched fist,” Wetang’ula stated. He also faulted President Uhuru for making changes in the security sector, saying he did not follow constitutional requirements.

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