Western MPs from across the political divide met Prime Cabinet Minister Musalia Mudavadi and they resolved to work together for development of the region.
The lawmakers led by Western Region MPs Caucus Chairman Sirisia MP John Waluke committed to uniting the region.
The leaders drawn from Vihiga, Kakamega, Busia, Bungoma, Trans Nzoia, and Nairobi counties promised to champion the interests of the region.
They resolved to work together under the leadership of the Prime Cabinet Secretary and National Assembly Speaker Moses Wetang’ula. Wetang’ula who did not attend the meeting sent an apology.
Mudavadi also used the meeting to congratulate the leaders on their election and urged them to put aside their political differences and forge a working relationship that is beneficial to the people of Western.
“If I stepped on you, forgive me. It has been a game of politics but it’s time we all now put that behind us and forge a united team,” he said.
“Elections are over and it’s time to heal, and hug each other and say ‘sorry it was just elections’ and move on for the sake of development of our communities. I, therefore, cannot overemphasize the need to work together, even if we don’t like each other,” he added.
The Prime Cabinet Secretary urged the leaders to approach issues affecting the people from a united front.
“I want us to start talking and engaging each other from all fronts. I want you to know that I am free and available for you. As we said during the campaigns, this is an open Government and as such, let us be free with each other,” he said.
MPs in attendance were Kakamega MPs Association Chairman Benard Shinali (Ikolomani), Titus Khamala (Lurambi), Tindi Mwale (Butere), Caleb Amisi (Saboti), and Christopher Aseka (Khwisero).
Others were Senators Bonnie Khalwale (Kakamega), Okiya Omtatah (Busia), Allan Chesang,’ (Trans Nzoia), MPs Innocent Mugabe (Likuyani), Didmus Barasa (Kimilili), Beatrice Elachi (Dagoretti North), Omboko Milemba (Emuhaya), Malulu Injendi (Malava), Mary Emaase (Teso South), Elsie Muhanda (Kakamega Woman Rep), Benard Masaka and Beatrice Adagala (Vihiga Woman Rep).
Others were Kivai Kagesi, Dick Maungu, Kakai Bisau, Clement Sloya (Sabatia), Patrick Simiyu, Peter Salasya (Mumias East), Lillian Siyoi, Dan Wanyama (Webuye), Charles Gimose (Hamisi), Emmanuel Wangwe (Navakholo), Godfrey Odanga (Matayos) and Tim Wanyonyi (Westlands).
The meeting discussed development projects including the revival of the sugar millers like Mumias Sugar Company.
Mudavadi called on the leaders to take stock of the projects and compare them with what is on the ground to ascertain their existence.
“There are instances where what is in the paper is not on the ground. Projects are listed as completed but in reality, money has been swindled, and there are no projects. Such are the issues that you need to bring to our attention,” he said.
Shinali (ODM) revealed that the meeting was not political and they discussed the development agenda and welcomed Waluke after spending time in jail.
“Musalia himself appreciated that we are from different political divides but that should not be a barrier for us to work together because the electorate deserves no less than service from us,” he said.
“Let no one talk about the 2027 elections or defecting because we have not even passed the first budget in Parliament and 2027 is way too far. We must first serve the people before we think of shifting political camps,” he added.
Funyula MP Wilberforce Mudenyo (ODM) said he deliberately skipped the meeting because the agenda was vague.
“That worked in the old era where leaders could meet government technocrats to champion development in their regions. Today development is done through the budget-making process in Parliament,” he said.
Former Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya said their was a need for the Mulembe community to speak in one voice, adding that they lost in the Eala vote because they were not strategic in their political moves.
“I proposed former MP Justus Kizito, but I was told by some that the legislator had no money. I wondered why money when they needed to elect a representative of the people in Arusha. We want to be part of the government in 2027 and this time we do not want to wait until the last minute,” he said at a funeral on Saturday.
He said he believes that ODM leader Raila Odinga’s political career was over and “if he does not look to him (Oparanya) who would he look to because we have stuck with him to the end.”