- They argued that introducing ODM leader Raila Odinga and his lieutenants into their affairs is likely to jeopardise some of the achievements the council has made.
- Ongadi said there is no vacuum in the council at the moment that warrants anyone to call for an election.
A faction of elders allied to Ker Nyandiko Ongadi wants politicians to keep off the affairs of the Luo council for its growth.
The elders want the council to be allowed to undertake its operations and functions independently without interference.
They argued that introducing ODM leader Raila Odinga and his lieutenants into their affairs is likely to jeopardise some of the achievements the council has made.
Some of the functions of the council are to unite the community for a cause including cultural practices.
The council through its leadership also speaks on behalf of the community.
There have been wrangles at the council leadership between Ongadi and Opiyo Otondi (deceased) over who is the bona fide chairman.
The two factions operate parallel and run their activities independently.
Last week, Raila together with Kisumu Deputy Governor Mathew Owili, Ugunga MP and minority leader in the National Assembly Opiyo Wandayi met some elders in Kisumu to plan how to get successor of Otondi.
Otondi died in February this year.
Raila presided over the meeting as the patron of the council.
But on Sunday, some elders allied to Ongadi criticised Raila and other politicians for making arrangements to install another elder as Ker (chairman)
They threatened to move to court to stop the process saying politicians should not be allowed to meddle and control activities of the council.
“Politicians normally have vested interests and they normally change goal posts if they don’t succeed. It’s important for Raila and other politicians from the Luo community to stop dictating to elders what they should do,” Ongadi said.
Speaking during their meeting at his home in Kendu Bay town, Karachuonyo constituency, Ongadi said they have not called any election to replace Otondi since he is the bona fide chairman.
According to the Ongadi, he holds the registration documents of the outfit and no one should speak on behalf of the council a part from him.
Should there be an election as planned to replace Otondi, Ongadi said they will not recognise the group.
He said the parallel outfit is acting like an opposition of the Luo council of elders.
“I have valid documents which were used to register the outfit at the office of the register of societies. I’m the chairman and spokesperson of the council,” he said.
Ongadi said there is no vacuum in the council at the moment that warrants anyone to call for an election.
“We have the rules and regulations that guide operations of the council. They must be followed and whoever disobeys them is a stranger,” he added.
His supporters Okinyi Rao and Ariko Adoyo said introducing politics into the council will not only affect their operations but also slow down their development.
“We’re wondering what interest the politicians have in the council. Elders don’t want politics in the council,” he said.
Adoyo said they have freedom to choose their chairman without influence from politicians.
“Ongadi is the spokesman of the council. Elders become members of the council after registration,” Adoyo said.