Storm brews in Azimio as Jubilee members call for urgent meeting
A political storm is brewing in the Azimio la Umoja-One Kenya coalition party over the sharing of Parliamentary Service Commission (PSC) nomination slots.
This is after Jubilee Party rejected individuals proposed by the coalition to take up the nomination slots.
Jubilee members, led by Nominated MP Sabina Chege in a press conference on Thursday, November 10, said the party was not considered despite an agreement to have the three slots shared among Orange Democratic Movement (ODM), Wiper Party, and Jubilee Party.
"The decision taken by the Senate, therefore, negates the democratic space of political parties in Parliament as the net effect of the decision taken by the Senate rendered two slots to the Orange Democratic Movement Party.
"The agreement by the Minority Party/ Coalition was to have the slots filled in as follows-
(i) Hon. Mishi Juma Khamisi Mboko, MP-Orange Democratic Movement Party (ii) Hon. Patrick Makau King'ola, MP- Wiper Party…thus the remaining slot is to be filled in by a nominee from the Jubilee Party," a statement signed by a section of Jubilee Party members read in part.
The party further wants the approval of nominees to the commission to be suspended until all the parties agreed.
"We, the leadership of the Jubilee Party in Parliament, are saddened by this show of impunity and urge-(i) all Members of Parliament across the political divide to carry the amendment by the Senate; and urge the Speakers of both Houses of Parliament (Senate and National Assembly) suspend forthwith the consideration of approval of nominees to the Parliament Service Commission until the matter has been resolved by the Minority Party/ Coalition," the statement added.
The disgruntled party has called for an urgent meeting to discuss their place in the coalition.
"We will convene an urgent meeting with our parliamentary group to discuss our relationship with our coalition partners," it added.
Last week, the parliamentary leadership submitted names of members, proposed to serve as commissioners, to their respective Speakers.
Kenya Kwanza Alliance, led by President William Ruto, has submitted names of Faith Gitau (Nyandarua Women Rep), Mohamed Ali (Nyali), Nderitu Kinyua (Laikipia) and Joyce Korir (Nominated).
All the names are from Ruto’s United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party while affiliates have been left out.
The Azimio la Umoja, led by Raila Odinga, submitted names of Mishi Mboko (Likoni), Patrick Makau (Mavoko), and Fatuma Dullow (Isiolo).
Should the members be approved, they will be sworn in to serve for five years.
“That pursuant to the provisions of Article 127(2) of the Constitution, the House approves the appointment of the following Members of the National Assembly and Senators to the Parliamentary Service Commission,” reads the order paper.
Jubilee picks Waluke
Azimio replaced jailed Sirisia MP John Waluke as a commissioner with Mboko.
The move came despite the Jubilee Party, a member of the coalition, maintaining that their pick was Waluke.
Secretary-General Jeremiah Kioni last week said that he had already written to National Assembly Speaker Moses Wetang’ula notifying him of the party’s choice hours after leader of Minority leader Opiyo Wandayi replaced Waluke’s name with Mboko’s thus giving his ODM party two slots out of the available three.
A section of MPs from the Western region, who support Waluke’s appointment, threatened to reject the list during Thursday’s sitting.
Waluke is currently being held at the Industrial Remand Prison pending an appeal he has launched over his 67 years jail term. He was found guilty and sentenced in a corruption case.
Waluke and his business partner Grace Wakhungu were sent back to jail after the High Court dismissed their appeals saying they were properly convicted and the more than 40 years they are required to serve in jail were not excessive.
The law requires that out of the seven commissioners appointed by Parliament from among its members, four will be nominated equally from both Houses by the party or coalition of parties forming the government, of whom at least two shall be women.
Three other members shall be nominated by the parties not forming the national government, at least one of whom shall be appointed from each House of which at least one shall be a woman.
The commission shall also include a man and a woman appointed by Parliament from among persons who are experienced in public affairs but are not members of Parliament.
Raila’s elder brother, Oburu Oginga, who is the Siaya Senator had expressed interest in the PSC slot.
PSC is responsible for providing services and facilities to ensure the efficient and effective functioning of Parliament, constituting offices in the parliamentary service, and appointing and supervising office holders.
The commission prepares the annual estimates of expenditure of the parliamentary service and submits them to the National Assembly for approval as well as exercising budgetary control.