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We are united, say NASA leaders

By Jacob Ng'etich | Updated Sun, March 19th 2017 at 10:54 GMT +3
From left: ANC Party Leader Musalia Mudavadi, former Cabinet Minister Fred Gumo, Siaya Senator James Orengo and Funyula MP Dr Paul Otuoma during the funeral of former Cabinet Minister Joseph Otiende in Vihiga County yesterday. [PHOTO: BENJAMIN SAKWA/STANDARD]

Opposition leaders have vowed to mount an earth-moving campaign to ensure  President Uhuru Kenyatta is voted out during the forthcoming poll.

Speaking separately, leaders allied to the National Supper Alliance (NASA) said they were determined to ensure the Opposition wins on polling day to end the suffering of Kenyans under the Jubilee Party (JP).

They also dismissed reports that they had broken ranks and said the political forays by parties within the super alliance were designed heighten political fervour in the run up to the poll.

There have been reports that the political jostling within NASA were an indication of a rift between its leaders. NASA brings together Raila Odinga’s ODM, Kalonzo Musyoka’s Wiper, Musalia Mudavadi’s Amani National Congress  and Moses Wetang’ula’s Ford Kenya parties.

The presentation by Kalonzo of his presidential nomination papers to his Wiper party  caused mummurs, and sparked reports that they may be a breaking of ranks between leaders of the coalition.

Heightened activities

However, in a telephone interview, Kalonzo said that his activities were designed to up his stakes in the alliance.

“We are in NASA to stay and every principal is adding value to themselves as they seek to carry the Opposition alliance flag. That should not be construed to mean there is a crack. We are intact as a coalition,” said the Wiper Party leader.

The four principals have been criss-crossing the country jointly and sometimes separately and political pundits have noted that in some instances the coalition parties have been working at cross purposes.

But, while addressing mourners at Kegoye village in Vihiga County during the funeral of Kenya’s pioneer Education Minister Joseph Otiende, Mudavadi assured opposition supporters that they were united and would work together  to eject Jubilee.

“The country has suffered in the last four years, and we cannot afford more years of misrule by Uhuru and his deputy William Ruto; it is the reason we must be united as an Opposition so that our victory is guaranteed,” said Mudavadi.

He said they had signed a pact to remain together and would fight to oust the ruling party from power. “Our eyes are trained on the ultimate prize,” added Mudavadi.

Wetang’ula dispelled fears of a fallouts in the alliance, stating that Kalonzo is firmly in the Opposition outfit.

Clearing the air on the political intrigues surrounding picking of the alliance’s presidential flag bearer, Wetang’ula gave assurance that there are no differences among the four NASA principals.  

“We want to assure Kenyans, and especially our supporters, that all is well. Those who think there will be a fallout will be in for shock,” said Wetang’ula in Trans Nzoia.

Wetang’ula, who was accompanied by the region’s local leaders, accused the Jubilee administration of being insensitive to the plight of Kenyans and asked the electorate to reject its re-election bid.

“Kenyans are suffering from economic hardships. Support NASA to enable us bring change and grow the economy,” said Wetang’ula.

Machakos Senator Johnstone Muthama said the coalition would ensure that the country was free of tribalism.

“I will not have any business with NASA if does not hold. I would rather quit politics and continue with my business and philanthropic work in my private capacity. I cannot stand another term with Jubilee in power,” Muthama said.

 Muthama said NASA would  raise the level of employment.  “If we got only five per cent of Kenyans, which is about two million to each, to create jobs for 10 people we will easily have 20 million people in employment. The government needs to provide a conducive environment for business and agriculture,” said Muthama.

Siaya Senator James Orengo and his Mombasa counterpart Hassan Omar said the individual parties within NASA must continue with their efforts to popularise themselves.

 Additional reporting by Osinde Obare

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