Raila party meets after Uhuru purge of Ruto allies from plum Senate posts

By People Reporter
Thursday, May 14th, 2020
ODM meeting
ODM leaders, including party leader Raila Odinga (third left), at Orange House on Thursday, May 14, 2020. PHOTO | COURTESY

By Emeka-Mayaka Gekara

The Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) on Thursday held what it billed as an informal meeting three days after President Uhuru Kenyatta engineered a dramatic purge that saw Deputy President William Ruto’s men kicked out of key positions in government.

Though set as a meeting to discuss the country’s fight against coronavirus, a source at the meeting chaired by Raila Odinga indicated that it was meant to gauge the party’s response to the purge.

“Of course the Ruto issue had to come up but the real focus was corona. We were doing housekeeping and the President’s recent actions were bound to land on the table,” said the source who requested anonymity.

"As a political party we are constantly monitoring the goings-on in other parties and the Ruto is one of them," the source revealed.

Among those who attended the meeting at the Orange House included Senate Minority Leader James Orengo, his National Assembly counterpart John Mbadi, Suna East MP Junet Mohammed and former Kitutu Masaba MP Timothy Bosire, who is the party national treasurer.

The meeting comes hot on the heels of the ejection of Elgeyo-Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen and Nakuru counterpart Susan Kihika as Majority Leader and Majority Whip respectively.

The Ruto allies ejection was followed by months-long machinations that led to change of Jubilee officials as well as new post-election pact with former ruling party, Kanu.

During the meeting, the party called on the government to monitor Kenya’s border with Tanzania.

This follows revelations that Tanzania which shares a long border with Kenya has been increasingly importing Covid-19 cases into Kenya.

The meeting comes barely three days after President Uhuru Kenyatta engineered dramatic changes at the Senate that saw Deputy President William Ruto’s allies kicked out of t heir senate seats.

“We urge the government to pay special attention at our borders with Tanzania and the evolving situation with health workers who threaten to go on strike so that we don’t excercebate an already bad situation,” them said in a statement signed by party secretary general Edwin Sifuna.

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