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NASA leaders meet at Coast ahead of retreat

NASA leaders Raila Odinga, Kalonzo Musyoka, Musalia Mudavadi and Moses Wetang’ula. (Photo: Edward Kiplimo/Standard)

Opposition leaders are expected to converge at the Coast this weekend amid conflicting reports on who will be the presidential candidate.

It is understood that National Super Alliance (NASA) leaders Raila Odinga, Kalonzo Musyoka, Musalia Mudavadi and Moses Wetang’ula are meeting ahead of a planned three-day retreat to consider a report on power-sharing.

Although the leaders will, beginning Friday have separate party engagements at the Coast, sources said they would later converge at a resort in Diani, South Coast for the talks.

Last evening, Siaya Senator James Orengo, a member of the National Coordinating Committee (NCC) said a report of the NASA technical committee had been shared with the principals.

“A further progress report will be made to the Summit before the principals go for a retreat on April 17, 18 and 19,” Orengo said.

He added: “The Summit expressed satisfaction with the work of the NCC and the technical committee.”

Orengo took issue with reports appearing in sections of the media on the choice of NASA’s flag bearer.

When they signed a coalition agreement, they set out party structures that included a five-member technical committee tasked with considering various options of picking a presidential candidate.

The technical team was to hand a report to the 12-member NCC with representatives from ODM, Wiper, Ford Kenya and Amani National Congress.

After consideration of the proposals, NCC was expected to submit the report to the principals, who have the final call on the alliance’s presidential candidate and running mate.

It is understood the two organs have concluded their work on the draft report reportedly leaning towards a Raila- Kalonzo ticket.

Under the reported arrangement, Mudavadi is designated as Chief Minister, with prospects of amending the constitution to re-introduce the prime minister’s post should NASA form the next government. Wetang’ula will be National Assembly Speaker.

Sources close to Raila said he would be in Kilifi Friday. Wetang’ula is also expected at the Coast this evening. Kalonzo is scheduled to tour Kwale on Saturday. Sources close to Mudavadi also said he would be at the Coast at the weekend “for a retreat”.

During a press briefing at its headquarters in Nairobi Thursday, ANC termed the reports as erroneous, arguing its members in the (NCC) and technical committee were not aware of any decision on the flag bearer.

“Our members in the NCC and technical committee are not aware of a decision having been made. We are however aware of many working documents and proposals under discussion in the two committees,” said Godfrey Osotsi, ANC’s secretary general.

ANC deputy party Leader Kipruto Kirwa, a  member of the NCC, asked Kenyans to ignore what he termed misleading information and remain steadfast on efforts to unite Kenyans in NASA.

ODM chairman John Mbadi called on the technical committee to ensure all the parameters of picking a winning team are upheld so that there is there no rift in NASA ahead of the August 8 elections.

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