Roba's UDM party raises Sh38 million, plans to register members

Mandera Governor Ali Roba, Nakuru Governor Lee Kinyanjui and Kiambu Senator Kimani Wamatangi during the United Democratic Movement fundraiser at Serena Hotel on October 31,  2021.  [David Gichuru, Standard]

United Democratic Movement (UDM) associated with Mandera Governor Ali Roba yesterday raised Sh38 million to fund its operations.

The party held a funds drive in Nairobi aimed at facilitating mass registration of members.

Roba took over UDM party two months ago and plans to promote it as a political vehicle for pastoralist communities.

The Governor promised that the party will champion the interests of the community and ensure their voices are heard.

Roba exuded confidence that UDM will be a game-changer politically and economically and will propel the region to the political negotiation table.

He said it’s time to ask what’s there for the pastoralist community on the negotiating table.

"We are also in the process of organising ourselves to ensure we are prepared during the election period while we get partnerships," he said.

"It’s important for us to have apolitical outfit in order to make sure that we champion the issues that are extremely critical to us; issues that have not gotten attention at the national level," the governor added.

Lawyer Ahmednassir Abdullahi who was the chief guest at the event said he was glad that the community will finally have a voice of their own.

"This is something that we have been waiting for long. It feels like we have finally gained our independence," he said

Wajir Senator Ali Abdullahi Ibrahim said UDM party will recognise everyone and not just the Arid and Semi-Arid Lands communities. Kiambu Senator Paul Wamangi lauded the community for the bold step saying the "Mountain" will be ready for them once they are set to climb.

"We all know that you will want to climb the Mountain soon, so keep in mind that we are ready and we will show you the ropes and share with you the secrets of climbing it," the Senator said.

Nakuru Governor Lee Kinyanjui said that the party should be encouraged since "there is nothing like a big or small party. It’s sad that even after all these years some counties still lag behind, but this party will go a long way."

Roba said UDM whose colours are black, red and yellow is open to negotiate with parties that have the community's interests at heart. This comes after a section of leaders from the region led by the Treasury Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yatani and Eldas MP Adan Keynan unveiled Upya Movement to champion for the community's interests.