Witness tells International Criminal Court about ODM’s birth, formative days
| October 8th 2013
|Deputy President William Ruto, his wife Rachel (second left), daughter June, Chuka Igamba Ngombe MP Onesmus Njuki (left) and Turbo MP Elisha Busienei praying outside the ICC Monday. [PHOTO: DPPS]|
QUESTION: When was it that the ‘Orange Movement’ evolved into a political party?
ANSWER: I am not very sure about the exact date, but it was in 2006.
QUESTION: Who were the founding members of the ODM as a party in 2006?
ANSWER: The founder members were a big team that campaigned for the ‘No’. They was Raila Odinga, Prof Anyang Nyong’o and there was also Janet Ong’era who was later appointed as the executive director (of the party).
QUESTION: Was William Samoei Ruto a founding member?
ANSWER: Mr Ruto by then was still in Kanu but was allied to the ODM side.
QUESTION: Was William Ruto part of this campaign?
QUESTION: Would it be fair to say that when the ODM evolved as a political party in 2006, Mr William Samoei Ruto was part of the team?
ANSWER: Mr Ruto was in Kanu, but was also in the Orange movement before it became a political party, when it was part of the movement for the Constitution; he was part of the team.
QUESTION: You have mentioned Mr Ruto as being part of Kanu, what does the acronym Kanu stand for?
ANSWER: Kenya African National Union Party.
QUESTION: Can you tell us when Mr Ruto became part of the ODM party?
ANSWER: Mr Ruto was part of the ODM and even became one of the Pentagon members.
QUESTION: Do you know when ODM was registered as a political party, if you have month or a year?
ANSWER: There were two ODMs, the first one was ODM party that was registered by Mr Mugambi Manyara and had a symbol of an orange. But when the ODM members were thinking how to register the party, they did a name search; they found out that the ODM had been registered by Mr Mugambi Manyara. They had to have a second thought on how to maintain and have a political party, they then sent the executive director Janet Ong’era to register the party, but she sent someone working in her office. She used Mr Daniel Maanzo, a lawyer who was working in her office, who went on to register the party as the ODM Party of Kenya. ODM had a symbol of one whole orange, then later they registered ODM-Kenya party, (which had) one and half oranges.
QUESTION: The first ODM party that was registered, do you know the dates or time period when the initial ODM was registered?
ANSWER: Actually I can’t know the exact dates but Mr Manyara went behind the backs of everyone involved in the movement. I am not specific on the dates.
QUESTION: Are you aware, however, how the second ODM party was registered, the one with an orange and half?
ANSWER: This came when they went for registration and found that the original ODM had been registered.
QUESTION: Do you know the dates?
ANSWER: It was around May or June.
QUESTION: The second ODM party, do you know who the key leaders were at the time of its registration?
ANSWER: The second ODM party, the leaders who converged together were Kalonzo Musyoka, Raila Odinga, Musalia Mudavadi, and Julia Ojiambo – she was in her own party called the Labour Party but was also in the ODM-Kenya. And there was Mr William Ruto and Mr Joseph Nyagah.
QUESTION: Mr William Ruto, was he still part of Kanu during the formation of ODM?
ANSWER: He had not declared that he had resigned from Kanu, because he was still an MP, and his party had sponsored (him). He became officially a member when the electoral commission gave a go-ahead for party nominations.
QUESTION: How did these two parties come to be resolved eventually?
ANSWER: We were going to have presidential nominations, the candidates would not reach a consensus and some were saying that if it would not be me, then I would not be in ODM. Some people dropped (out) like Julia Ojiambo because she was feeling she could not make it to win the nomination. Daniel Maanzo was from the Kamba region, he ran out with the party with Kalonzo Musyoka where he became the party flag-bearer. Kalonzo picked the party which had the symbol of an orange and half.
QUESTION: Was Manyara the leader of ODM?
ANSWER: Manyara was holding the certificate and symbol, and was the chairman of the ODM.
QUESTION: What became of Raila Odinga, William Ruto?
ANSWER: Kalonzo never won because there was no nomination. Kalonzo canvassed with Maanzo, he became the automatic flag-bearer leaving Raila, Ruto, Ngilu without a party. It forced Mr Raila and the other pentagon members to talk and find another solution where they could get another party. It was not a good time. There was no time, they would have been clocked out by the IEBC. Nyagah went to persuade Mr Manyara to bring back the original party of ODM of which Mr Manyara brought back. Mr Manyara agreed and reconciled with Raila Odinga and the other leaders to return the party.
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