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KANU now moves digital membership drive to county branches

By Mireri Junior | August 21st 2020

Former Saimo/Kipsaraman MCA Vincent Kiror (centre) with other Baringo branch KANU officials and members addresses the press at Kabarnet town in Baringo during the launch of KANU membership digital registration at the county level. [Kipsang Joseph, Standard]

KANU has rolled out a countrywide digital membership recruitment drive aimed at strengthening the party ahead of the 2022 General Election.

The party has tasked its branch officials throughout the country to lead an intensive membership recruitment drive as it seeks to shore up grassroots support.

The branches drive seeks to cascade the exercise launched by party chairman Gideon Moi on July 30 at the party's headquarters in Nairobi as the Independence party intensifies its preparations for the succession politics and next polls. 

Speaking to Standard Digital on phone on Friday, KANU National Organising Secretary Abdulrahman Bafadhi said the party has cascaded the drive to branch level to boost its influence and that of its party leader.

He said the drive, which enlists new members through an interactive digital platform targets the youth, women, and people with disability to enhance inclusivity. 

“We have directed our branch officials to channel their energy on recruitment of members using the digital system because of its interactive nature. Our main target is the youth, women, and people living with disability to enhance inclusivity,” said Bafadhil.  

Bafadhali said KANU is headed in the right direction, adding that come 2022, it will be among the heavyweight political parties.

He said Gideon is in the 2022 national leadership matrix hence the need to reorganise the party for bigger things ahead of the polls.

“Gideon is in the 2022 national leadership matrix. That is why our headquarters is now a beehive of activities with delegations from different counties seeking to shift their allegiance to KANU,” he said adding that this week alone, the party has received delegations from Trans Nzoia, Mombasa, Murang’a, and Laikipia.

The recruitment system, comprising of a USSD: *483*03# and a web portal: join.kanuparty.org, is meant to ensure that the party reaches out to as many potential members as possible while complementing the existing manual registration process.

Gaining momentum

KANU’s Director of Party Organisation in charge of membership recruitment Job Waka said that the drive is gaining momentum, notably in Homa Bay, Baringo, Nyeri, Murang’a and Nakuru.   

“Membership is the lifeline of any political party. I am happy with the overwhelming response we are receiving with forays into different counties such as Homa Bay, Baringo, Nyeri, Murang’a and Nakuru among others,” said Waka.

While Deputy President William Ruto still enjoys massive support in Rift Valley, Gideon has been making significant inroads in the region as the safe alternative thanks to his calm demeanour and the support for President Uhuru Kenyatta’s legacy term.   

High stakes election

Speaking during the launch of the digital membership recruitment exercise, Gideon said KANU must brace itself for a tough battle, adding that the stakes are high in the upcoming elections.

“The stakes are indeed high and because we have a history to contend with, our climb will even be steeper. If there is anywhere we can draw invaluable lessons as a party, it is in our past – a past of mixed fortunes, a past of ups and downs,” said the Baringo Senator. 

Since the party signed a post-election coalition pact with the ruling Jubilee, Gideon’s national profile has been rising due to his camaraderie with President Uhuru Kenyatta with some of his allies prominently featuring in the list of appointments to various government parastatals.    

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