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Raila, Nyanza leaders meet to discuss 'Jubilee moles' accusations

POLITICS
By Rawlings Otieno | June 23rd 2015
Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga and Nominated MP Oburu Oginga during the meeting with Nyanza leaders in Nairobi yesterday. [PHOTO: COURTESY]

Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) leader Raila Odinga has moved to quell the animosity within the party where some MPs are accused of working with Jubilee government.

During a meeting at a Nairobi hotel yesterday to discuss the issue, Raila had a difficult time controlling the heated debate, as the perceived rebels denied the accusations.

 Mr Odinga assured the legislators no one in the party will be branded a ‘mole’ anymore.

“We know there has been animosity among our members and we have agreed that there is no mole in ODM. We are one indivisible party,” said Odinga.

MPs Jakoyo Midiwo (Gem), Ken Obura (Kisumu Central), David Ochieng’ (Ugenya) have been on the receiving end after allegations they were working with the Government to sabotage the party.

They have since denied being ‘moles’ and pledged their loyalty to ODM and its leader.

“We have had a healthy debate and all those alleged to be moles have defended themselves of the accusation. We have identified the sticking points and we shall deal with them,” said the former premier.

Raila’s elder brother, Nominated MP Oburu Odinga, had accused National Assembly Deputy Minority Leader Midiwo of ‘wining and dining with the Jubilee government,’ a statement that irked Midiwo.

The two shook hands yesterday as sign of reconciliation in front of the party leader. “Having friends across the political divide should not be misconstrued to mean that they are working for the other side. We have agreed that there are no traitors,”  Raila said.

shun spats

The former premier also reiterated the need for the elected leaders such as members of county assembly (MCAs), governors, MPs and the senators to shun public confrontations and work together.

The Opposition chief said  the animosity among leaders from the larger Luo Nyanza was impeding efforts to have a formidable force ahead of 2017 polls.

“We have agreed that all the elected leaders must respect each other and work together. The acrimony has now been resolved,” said Mr Odinga.

However, a source who spoke to The Standard in confidence intimated that the issue was not satisfactorily concluded.

The source further revealed that the meeting resolved that the matter will further be discussed during Siaya Leaders Forum whose date hasn’t been set.

“The shaking of the hand between Midiwo and Oburu was just a public relations exercise. The issue was not conclusively addressed and we agreed that it will be discussed during the Siaya Leaders Forum,” said the source.

During the meeting that brought together MPs and senators from Homa Bay, Migori, Kisumu and Siaya counties, the leaders accused the Government of selective issuance of identity cards, which they said had denied thousands of youth to access State funds to start income generating programmes.

He said despite raising the red flag over acquisition of ID cards and the voter registration, areas perceived to be opposition stronghold continued to be discriminated against. "We demand that the process be transparent across the country,” said Raila.

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