ADVANCED STAGE

Oka bosses inch closer to picking flag bearer amid division

They have retreated to Elementaita in Nakuru for a meeting with the technical team

In Summary

•The team will craft a coalition agreement and propose coalition theme colours that will be ratified by the principals.

•Last week, the Oka chiefs said they would retreat on February 18.

ANC leader Musalia Mudavadi, Wiper's Kalonzo Musyoka and Kanu's Gideon Moi during a meeting with Mt Kenya tycoons on October 7.
ANC leader Musalia Mudavadi, Wiper's Kalonzo Musyoka and Kanu's Gideon Moi during a meeting with Mt Kenya tycoons on October 7.
Image: MERCY MUMO

The Oka bosses are on Friday expected to give a clearer picture of when they will pick a presidential flag bearer amid division and mistrust in the alliance.

They retreated to Elementaita in Nakuru for a meeting with the technical team, which has been working on a formula for picking a candidate.

The technical team has been in Nakuru for the last three days fine-tuning the report. 

Principals Kalonzo Musyoka (Wiper), Musalia Mudavadi (ANC), Moses Wetangula (Ford Kenya) and Gideon Moi (Kanu) joined the team on Thursday to discuss the report.

“They are joining us, then we shall discuss with them until tomorrow,” a member of the team told the Star.

The team, which comprises legal experts, politicians and governance experts, will come up with the campaign schedule.

It will craft a coalition agreement document and propose coalition theme colours that will be ratified by the principals.

Last week, the Oka chiefs said they would retreat on February 18.

The Oka bosses would discuss the technical team’s report.

“The process to identify our flagbearer is at an advanced stage, whoever the flagbearer is, he or she will carry the aspirations of the millions of Kenyans,” they said during a press conference.

The meeting comes at a time when the Oka chiefs have been under pressure from their troops to pick a presidential candidate.

The flagbearer will battle it out with Deputy President William Ruto and ODM boss Raila Odinga among other presidential hopefuls. 

Last year, some ANC legislators led by Kakamega Senator Cleophas Malala gave the principals until December 25, to name flagbearer.

On Tuesday, Malala said the leaders must name a candidate in the shortest time possible or they chart their way as ANC.

“They should give us a presidential candidate. The technical team had already come up with the modalities of identifying a candidate. These retreats will help us because time is running out,” he said.

“We urge them that by January 25, they should give us a candidate. They should stop wasting our time with these retreats. If they are not giving us a presidential candidate, we are charting our way.” 

Suspicion and mistrust have also hit the alliance that is yet to hit the campaign trail, months to the elections.

Musalia is reportedly gravitating towards Ruto's camp with his key ally, Malala, attending the DP's mega meeting in Eldoret.

Kalonzo is believed to be pushing for a coalition with Raila under his Azimio la Umoja Movement.

However, the principals have often denied the claims, saying the alliance will field a presidential candidate.

Edited by Kiilu Damaris