Azimio to form panel to recommend Raila’s running mate
Azimio la Umoja - One Kenya coalition has announced that it will form an advisory committee with a mandate of picking the right candidate to be Raila Odinga's running mate in the August election.
This new development comes after the leadership of the coalition party led by President Uhuru Kenyatta, ODM leader Raila Odinga and his Wiper counterpart Kalonzo Musyoka held a closed-door meeting at the KICC on Thursday morning.
While addressing the press, Suna East MP Mohamed Junet revealed that during the meeting, the party's leadership also revolved to establishing its other organs which will ensure that they win the presidency come August 9 this year. Some of the organs include Coalition Election Board, Coalitions Elections Appeal Board, National Disciplinary Committee and Dispute Resolution Panel.
"Azimio la Umoja One Kenya coalition council also resolved to appoint an advisory panel to recommend to the presidential candidate suitable candidates for nomination as the deputy presidential candidate. The council has also directed the national coalition executive committee to immediately prepare a campaign strategy and plan that will ensure; the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya presidential candidate wins the 2022 presidential election, Azimio forms the next government and last the coalition forms the majority in Parliament and all 47 County Assemblies," Junet said.
The formation of the panel comes at a time when the debate on who will be Raila's running mate within the Azimio has become a matter of contestation with several parties fronting different people for the position.
Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka has for instance insisted that he is the right person to deputise the Azimio presidential candidate and has also threatened to withdraw from the coalition should he miss the number two slot.
On the other hand, President Uhuru's men from the Mt Kenya region have also insisted that Raila's deputy must come from Central Kenya with leaders such as Narc Kenya party leader Martha Karua, former Gatanga MP Peter Kenneth and Agriculture CS Peter Munya being fronted for the same position.
Due to the increasing pressure to name his deputy, for Prime Minister has written to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) seeking the postponement of the dates to submit the names of running mates. IEBC had ordered presidential candidates to submit the names of their running as early as next week Thursday.
Raila has, therefore, called for relevant clarification from the IEBC in order to comply with the Constitution. He argues that the actual timeline for the submission of the names of running mates is between May 29 and June 6.
The ODM chief argued that the submission of names on April 28 will just be one of the qualifications for those who wish to run for the presidency.