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Azimio cracks: Leaders train guns on Kalonzo over new lobby

 Azimio la Umoja principals Martha Karua, Raila Odinga and Kalonzo Musyoka during the Kamkunji Grounds rally held at Kibra on April 28, 2023. [Silas Otieno, Standard]

A supremacy battle is brewing in Azimio after Narc Kenya leader Martha Karua and Jubilee Party Secretary General Jeremiah Kioni hit out at Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka over anti-Kamwene remarks.

In an interview with The Standard, Kalonzo described the Kamwene Leadership Forum, as “a terrible political philosophy that sought to militate against the main objective of the Azimio grand coalition."

“I would advise my sister and those who have come up with the formation to leave it so that we can stick together and adhere to the agenda of Azimio. Just like in Kikuyu, the meaning of the word in Kikamba is individualism against the tenets of unity of purpose,” he claimed.

In a rebuttal, Karua wondered why Kalonzo was bothered by the movement and its business.

“What about Kamwene scares my brother Kalonzo Musyoka that he must drag it in every conversation he has?” She posed.

Kioni came out guns blazing claiming that the Wiper leader’s fears were premised on the unity and cohesion of the Agikuyu community.

“Our group has the spirit of Mau Mau and since those opposed to our group were against the group, that is why they feel threatened and want us to abandon our mission and objective,” he told The Standard on phone.

Kioni, like Karua, could not understand why Kalonzo was disturbed by Kamwene saying that he (Wiper leader) was among the leaders in Azimio who wondered why Mt Kenya leaders within Azimio were not leading demonstrations against the government.

“He was among those in our coalition who piled pressure on us to start protests but when we start organising ourselves to speak in one voice against the ills, he is against such motives. He does not want us to organise ourselves,” he said.

He said Kamwene Leadership Forum which they formed in October last year will continue championing the interests of Mt Kenya region unbowed by Kalonzo and other leaders.

“We have ignited the fire and it is bearing fruits that is why those in government who are discontented by the performance of Kenya Kwanza administration have joined us with the likes of William Kabogo and Ferdinard Waititu,” Kioni said.

The Jubilee Secretary General also chided the Wiper leader for declaring himself the 2027 presidential candidate instead of waiting for Azimio's nod saying the move was premature.

National Assembly Minority Leader Opiyo Wandayi dismissed Kalonzo's move terming it premature.

He said by 2027, Azimio will have undergone major political transformation and will incorporate other political parties that will declare the presidential declaration irrelevant.

"By 2027 our coalition will have undergone serious changes, it will seek more partners a move that will dwarf the proclamations from some quarters," he said 

In the interview with The Standard, Kalonzo maintained that he will be on the ballot in 2027 insisting that he won't back down for Raila or any other candidate in the coalition.

He disclosed that he has summoned Wiper party’s highest decision-making organ; the National Executive Committee (NEC) on January 16 which will subsequently announce his presidential bid before hitting the ground for church activities, public barazas and the meet the people.

“We shall launch an all-out charm meet the people tour using ‘mapema ndio best’ slogan after rebranding our party to a monumental national outfit and a solid political party that will accommodate all candidates seeking elective positions in 2027,” he said.

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