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Cotu has abandoned workers, wallows in political dances, says ANC

By Japheth Ogila | May 31st 2020

ANC Party leader Musalia Mudavadi speaks during the BBI rally at Narok Stadium on February 22, 2020. He has slammed Cotu leadership and the government for failing to address the welfare of workers. [File, Standard]

Amani National Congress (ANC) party has accused the Central Trade Organisation Union (Cotu) leaders of abandoning workers amidst the biting economic ramifications triggered by the coronavirus.

In its message coming ahead of the Madaraka Day set for Monday, ANC said that Kenyans have been left on their own by the leaders charged with the responsibility of addressing the welfare.

It singled out Cotu, led by Secretary-General Francis Atwoli for sleeping on its mandate and abandoning workers at the hour of need.

“Trade Union leaders have abandoned workers to their doom. As workers wallow in uncertainty, their leaders are immersed in celebratory dances, with sections of the political class,” ANC notes in its statement, signed by its leader Musalia Mudavadi.

“The wider relevance of what Cotu is doing for workers at these celebratory jamborees is not known. What is known is that the worker is alone. He has lost his job and his earnings, but nobody seems to care about him.”

About a recent meeting in which Cotu leader Francis Atwoli hosted politicians drawn from Western Kenya at his Kajiado home; ANC said it portrayed double standards in enforcing Covid-19 rules.

“…trade union leaders are enjoying themselves at lavish functions and jamborees that defied coronavirus guidelines. If leaders defy these guidelines with impunity, why should wananchi observe them?” posed ANC.

The Amani party has now called on the government to avoid applying the law selectively saying that leaders who defy Covid-19 safety rules should also be rounded up and quarantined just like ordinary Kenyans.

Atwoli met Western Kenya politicians where they met and met and made a resolution to pursue Luhya unity under the guidance of Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya, Devolution Cabinet Secretary Eugene Wamalwa and Busia Governor Wycliffe Wangamati.

The Mudavadi-led party has also trained its guns on the Executive for taking hold of legislators and threatening them to silence.

According to ANC, the ongoing purge in ODM and Jubilee is interfering with the lawmakers because they live in fear of being de-whipped hence cannot discharge their duties.

“Both the National Assembly and Senate no longer work for the people. With few exceptions, the legislature is now a forum for self-seeking individuals. The Executive has capitalised on legislators’ anxiety for a good life, to take Parliament hostage with free will and invitation.”

This comes alongside ongoing restructuring in the ruling Jubilee party where senators allied to Deputy President William Ruto have been removed from senate committee positions.

Some key figures include Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen, Tharaka-Nithi Senator Prof Kithure Kindiki and Narok Senator Susan Kihikia who were all ousted from Majority Leader, Deputy Speaker and Chief Whip positions respectively.

A similar purge was also launched by ODM where legislators seen to be defying the party were de-whipped.

The changes are expected to affect Malindi MP Aisha Jumwa who has since shifted allegiance to DP Ruto’s camp, Tangatanga.

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