JUBILEE FALLOUT

Is DP Ruto running a parallel government from Karen?

The rift in Jubilee has been widening. Allies of DP are now associating with United Democratic Alliance

In Summary

• After Ruto invited MPs supporting his 2022 presidential bid to a meeting at his Karen residence a statement was released.

•  The message was clear. Their war with the President was far from over.

DP William Ruto hosts MPs allied to him from various political parties at Karen residence, Nairobi county, on February 8, 2021
DP William Ruto hosts MPs allied to him from various political parties at Karen residence, Nairobi county, on February 8, 2021
Image: DPPS

A few weeks ago, Deputy President William Ruto invited MPs supporting his 2022 presidential bid to a meeting at his Karen residence.

Coming in the eve of reconvening of the two Houses of parliament, the media had reported the deliberations would mainly focus on taking a common position on the pending Bills and motions. This would help them to push the agenda of the so-called ‘hustler nation movement’.

After the meeting, the first question that came to my mind was, does it mean we have two governments in Kenya? Let the truth be told. The Deputy President had convened a parliamentary group meeting. But according to the Jubilee Party constitution, this responsibility ought to have been exercised by the President, who is the party leader.

Only members of the Jubilee’s Tangatanga faction were invited to the Karen meeting. What does this tell you? The DP convened that meeting without the blessings of the party leader.

The message in the statement released by Ruto allies was clear. Their war with the President, which was triggered by the handshake between him and ODM leader Raila Odinga, was far from over.

We know, up to date, they have been making unsubstantiated claims that the unity deal seeks to scuttle the presidential ambitions of the DP.

The President and Raila have denied this. However, the rift in Jubilee has been widening. Allies of DP are now associating with United Democratic Alliance (UDA).

The Jubilee constitution outlines a raft of punitive measures to be taken against such errant members, who for instance ditch the party, form another one and articulate the agenda of the new outfit.

Having associated with UDA, the purging of the five nominated senators and Senate Chief Whip Irungu Kang’ata was long overdue.

Political party discipline is a key component in ensuring the leadership lives up to the promises made during campaigns. Many countries across the world are governed by strong political parties.

In Africa we have the Africa National Congress of South Africa and Chama Cha Mapinduzi [CCM] of Tanzania. The ANC has so far removed two presidents —Thabo Mbeki and Jacob Nzuma – from of office.

Mutua Ndonga is a social commentator and blogger

Nairobi