• ODM official says Raila and ODM have nothing to do with Jubilee wrangles.
•The story is a desperate move to undermine the handshake.
The Orange Democratic Movement has dismissed as planted a Sunday newspaper report that Raphael Tuju is now a senior adviser of its leader Raila Odinga.
ODM secretary general Edwin Sifuna said the Sunday Nation story was pushed by Deputy President William Ruto's allies to undermine the handshake between Raila and President Uhuru Kenyatta.
Uhuru is the Jubilee Party leader while Tuju is the secretary general.
“We are shocked as a party that today the media claimed that Tuju is the chief adviser of our party leader. The story is a mere propaganda tool,” Sifuna said.
He said Ruto allies “planted the fake story” as a desperate move to kick Tuju out of his senior Jubilee position of secretary general.
“As a party, we can confidently say that Raila has enough advisers and there is nowhere that Tuju has been an adviser,” Sifuna said.
Ruto is said to have remarked on the social media after the alleged expose: “So our democracy is so liberal that the SG of the ruling party has become the chief strategist of the opposition!! Maajabu.”
Sifuna said Raila and ODM have nothing to do with Jubilee wrangles.
He called on Ruto and his Tangatanga team to tackle their differences with Tuju and stop blaming Raila.
The ODM official was addressing a funds drive for St Celestino Oruba Catholic Church, Suna West, on Sunday.
Sifuna called on ODM legislators in both the National Assembly and the Senate to ensure that the standoff over counties' money is res0lved. Governors and senators intended to demonstrate against the standoff in Nairobi on Monday.
“ODM leaders in both houses should help safeguard devolution which was championed by the Orange party,” Sifuna said.
His host, MP Peter Masara responded: “Kenyans want services and development. We need the money meant for devolution released.”
The occasion was attended by Migori Senator Ochillo Ayako, Busia Woman Representative Florence Mutua and MPs Paul Abuor (Rongo), Lillian Gogo (Rangwe), Tim Wanyonyi (Westlands) and Mark Nyamita (Uriri).
Wanyonyi said the senators and governors had misrepresented the standoff as a problem caused by Parliament and not the Treasury.
“We don’t have any standoff in the two houses. The only problem is that the national government, through the Treasury, has refused to release money meant for counties,” Wanyonyi said.