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Jubilee and CORD disagree on Infotrak survey

POLITICS
By Rushdie Oudia | March 28th 2016
Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi said the only poll that would add value was the rating of the Jubilee government on its performance. (Photo: File)

Jubilee and the Coalition for Reforms and Democracy (CORD) leaders have differed sharply over the opinion polls released by Infotrak Sunday.

The poll placed President Uhuru Kenyatta ahead of Raila Odinga in the popularity rating, with Jubilee Alliance Party (JAP) ranked the most popular party, dislodging the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM).

CORD leaders dismissed the polls, terming them a distraction from real issues affecting Kenyans while some Jubilee leaders welcomed the President's lead, although arguing he was much more popular than reflected.

Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi, who is ODM's secretary for political affairs, termed the poll irrelevant and diversionary, saying the only poll that would add value was the rating of the Jubilee government on its performance.

"As we speak, who is Uhuru running against to warrant a rating? Who else is campaigning apart from Uhuru? The only time an opinion poll can make sense is once all political parties have nominated their presidential candidates," said Mr Wandayi.

He added the popularity of political parties can only be determined by the size of membership, asking whether JAP had carried out registration of members or tried to carry out internal elections like ODM did.

"We are not going to be distracted by the latest opinion polls and many others that will follow. We are busy engaging with Kenyans, majority of whom are clearly tired of Jubilee's corruption, incompetence and tribalism," said Wandayi.

But ODM Secretary General and Budalangi MP Ababu Namwamba, said the poll was a wake up call for ODM and CORD to work harder in marketing their party and candidate. "There is no reason for panic. I have noted the large percentage of those undecided. We will target this band even as we go all out to claw back the advantage from our rivals," said Mr Namwamba.

Kisumu West MP John Olago Aluoch said Infotrak was on a propaganda track and had beaten its own record in sycophancy too.

"With the current reports of massive corruption bedeviling the Government, President Kenyatta's rating is at its lowest," said Mr Olago.

Disband party

He added that JAP could not be more popular than ODM when its proposed affiliates were in open disagreement on whether to disband and join it or not. "With the ongoing disclosures of massive rip-offs from the youth empowerment fund by Uhuru's cronies, its support among the youth is at its lowest," said Olago.

Nominated ODM Senator Harold Kipchumba said JAP did not exist and therefore could not be compared to ODM. He accused the Government of trying to amend the Political Parties Act to suit their JAP merger.

Dagoreti North MP Simba Arati said JAP could not be that popular when it had been defeated in Malindi and Kajiado.

But Kiambu Senator Kimani Wamatangi said the polls were a clear reflection of what was happening and that actions were speaking louder than words.

"The present generation of Kenyans have transitioned and matured in judgement of what amounts to leadership the people can believe in as opposed to the politics of hot air, which only take people from one high to the other in a game of political spin masters," said Mr Wamatangi.

The National Alliance Chairman Johnson Sakaja said that polls were never taken at face value. He said his party relied on its own internally conducted polls whose veracity it could vouch for. "We shall study the Infotrak polls and determine their veracity given the methodology used. Either way, we believe the President's popularity is much higher than stated," he said.

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