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City official turns down plum job in DP Ruto’s UDA party

By Josphat Thiong'o | Jan 19th 2022 | 2 min read

Deputy President William Ruto admires a drawing of his image that was bought to him by his supporters during UDA rally in Eldoret on January 6, 2022. [Peter Ochieng, Standard]

An appointee has declined to take up a senior party position in Deputy President William Ruto’s United Democratic Alliance (UDA). 

Mohamed Sahal had been picked for Deputy Secretary-General in charge of operations.

Mr Sahal, the Nairobi County Health Chief Officer, made the decision after the party top brass nominated him and published his name in the list of party officials in December last year.

He had been appointed to replace Ruth Ondicho in the team that will manage Dr Ruto’s presidential campaigns.

Sahal said he could not take up the position because it would amount to a conflict of interest given that he is a public officer.

“Thank you for offering me the position. Unfortunately, I have decided to turn it down as it isn’t the right fit for me because I am a public officer,” read Sahal’s letter dated December 3, last year to the party.

“Kindly communicate the same to the Registrar of Political Parties. I wish you all the best in finding someone suitable for the position,” read the letter.

In a response, UDA Secretary-General Veronica Maina accepted Sahal’s notice of resignation/decline in a letter dated December 3, 2021.

“…We regret that you are not able to take up this position. However, we respect and accept your decision on this matter and we shall forthwith request the Registrar of Political Parties to degazette you from the list of our NEC members,” said Maina.

Sahal oversees four departments at the city-county. His initial appointment at City Hall was by former Governor Mike Sonko in May 2018. 

In the party changes announced by UDA through the gazette notice dated December 3, 2021, Omingo Magara was appointed national treasurer, replacing Eddah Jebet, Karisa Munyika as national organising secretary, taking over from Anthony Otieno Ombok.

UDA also picked Seth Panyako as deputy chairperson, Programmes and Nicholas Marete as the deputy chair, Strategy. Kirwa Rono was appointed as the deputy chairperson in charge of Operations. Eliud Owalo was appointed deputy secretary-general in charge of Strategy. There were several other appointments. 

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