Mudavadi: Our focus is on economy
Amani National Congress party leader Musalia Mudavadi has declared that the Kenya Kwanza Coalition has set its sights on resuscitating the ailing economy and not dishing out positions of power to individuals within the formation.
The former Vice-President said the coalition that brings together him, Deputy President William Ruto, National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi of the Democratic Party of Kenya and Bungoma Senator Moses Wetang’ula, among others, had chosen to stand with and defend Kenyans by addressing their plight instead of paying attention to politics of power-grab merely for the heck of it.
In an interview with People Daily, Mudavadi, who has been touted as a possible candidate for the position of running mate to Ruto in the August 9 presidential race ruled out a possibility of a fallout in the coalition after the final line-up is released.
He said continued talk in the media of positions to be dished out to politicians after the General Election is a deliberate diversionary attempt by detractors meant to keep the electorate’s attention from the real issues facing the country.
“Who does not know where people who are dying for positions are? Anybody who lives in this country knows very well where the people who nurse hangovers of power-grab days on end belong. They cannot be found in Kenya Kwanza,” he said.
Mudavadi added: “For the record, Kenya Kwanza has an overflowing number of talents and brains all who are qualified to be President and any other position. There can, therefore, be no jostling of positions within our ranks. We are very organised and very focused. We shall not be distracted by propagandists and malicious rivals,” the former Deputy Prime Minister added.
Mainstream media has in the last three weeks been awash with reports of alleged power struggles in both Kenya Kwanza and Azimio-One Kenya coalition, whose presidential candidate is former Prime Minister and Orange Democratic Movement leader Raila Odinga.
In Kenya Kwanza, leaders linked to the scramble are Mudavadi, Mathira MP Rigathi Gachagua, Tharaka Nithi Senator Prof Kithure Kindiki and Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiguru. The Azimio ensemble has former Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka Narc Kenya leader Martha Karua, Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya, former Gatanga MP Peter Kenneth and Murang’a Woman Rep Sabina Chege angling for the seat.
However, Mudavadi trashed claims of a power struggle within Kenya Kwanza on the position of running-mate or any other, terming it as wishful thinking on the part of their opponents.
“To start talking about allocation of positions to individuals at this moment in time is to miss the point. Kenya does not have a deficit of political seats or occupants of those positions,” the ANC boss held.
He added: “The question is: What have those who hold those positions done with them? The country is suffering from poor and unfocussed leadership, not positions and that is what we want to correct after we take power in August.” Mudavadi argued that concerns around a sagging economy are the common factor that brought together leaders and political parties coalescing under the Kenya Kwanza umbrella.
It is against that background, he said, that his coalition is moving around the country listening to the views of all Kenyans through the economic forums, which have so far been held in Nyeri, Kakamega, Vihiga, Busia, Kisii and Nyamira counties.
“There are people preoccupied with changing the Constitution so as to create political positions for themselves. We do not play in that league; so that cannot be our agenda of discussion. We are fully concentrated on how to revamp the economy and unite the country,” he said.
Asked if he and his party had placed any conditions on their coalition partners regarding the seat of Deputy President, Mudavadi said such deliberations had not taken place because “we are very busy and there is no room for such talk”.