Jubilee split over push to cut ties with DP William Ruto

Deputy President William Ruto and Jubilee Secretary General Raphael Tuju. [Stafford Ondego, Standard]

A meeting by top Jubilee officials convened yesterday to discuss a proposal to end the pre-election pact with the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) failed to reach an agreement.

It has emerged that some officials want the push to cut links with the party associated with Deputy President William Ruto dropped.

Those opposed to the push have cited possible complications since some of the leaders elected on the Party of Development and Reforms (PDR), which rebranded to UDA, are holding leadership positions in Parliament and are backing President Uhuru Kenyatta.

Senate Deputy Majority Leader Fatuma Dullo was elected on the party. Others elected on PDR ticket are MPs Fatuma Gedi (Wajir) Ahmed Bashane (Tarbaj), Mark Lomunokol (Kacheliba) and Sophia Abdi (Ijara).

“There is a feeling among some of the officials that this is unnecessary fight that could end up consuming our time,” said an official who sought anonymity.

Yesterday, Jubilee Secretary General Raphael Tuju confirmed that the party’s National Management Committee met to discuss the standoff between Jubilee and UDA, forthcoming by-elections among other issues.

He said the meeting by the party organ would continue today before any public announcements on some of their deliberations are made.

“We had our NMC meeting. The things being discussed will continue tomorrow (today). There are several things that we discussed, including the forthcoming by-election. Everything was on the agenda, but we concentrated on the mini-polls,” said Tuju.

Jubilee deputy secretary-general Joshua Kutuny had earlier indicated that Jubilee was determined to end the marriage. 

“They cannot be trusted. They have gone ahead to work on their agenda for 2022,” said Mr Kutuny.

He added: “Why are they desperate again and want to engage with our party? We gave them an exit. Why put hurdles again?” he added.

The meeting by NMC was triggered by a decision by UDA to challenge the divorce.

UDA wants the matter currently before the Registrar of Political Parties Ann Nderitu left to the internal mechanisms of the two parties.

Tuju had written to Ms Nderitu seeking a dissolution of its pre-election agreement with PDR.

“After considering the prevailing political and legal hurdles facing the proposed coalition, (it) found it improper and untenable to complete the formulation of the coalition,” read the letter from Tuju.

“This is to request that you take note of this letter and to put on record our revocation of the provisional coalition agreement lodged in your offices on May 6, 2018 that was never completed,” he added.

But UDA, in a response to the registrar, said it had confidence in the disputes arbitration panel of the coalition to determine its fate.  

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