Bipartisan Talks: Headache for Ruto as Raila Rejects Invite to Iron Out Differences

1 week ago 25

President William Ruto's plans to rescue the bipartisan hit a snag after the Azimio team, on Thursday, May 25, turned down an invitation to iron out the differences. 

Azimio la Umoja, led by Rarieda Member of Parliament Otiende Amollo, indicated they would only honour the calls for talks if Kenya Kwanza conceded to some of their demands

Among the demands raised by Azimio included getting an assurance from Kenya Kwanza side that they would not interfere with political parties, including Jubilee Party.

Amollo added that Azimio would agree to resume bipartisan talks if Kenya Kwanza agreed to address the high cost of living. Failure to which, Amollo insisted that meeting Kenya Kwanza would be a waste of time.

Rarieda Member of Parliament Otiende Amollo during a committee meeting on April 14, 2023.


Otiende Amollo

Other issues they differed on which they needed assurance, were the preservation of the election servers, suspension of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) reconstitution.

"Our letter was a notification which does not require a respond; the only response we would have is a communication by them that they are prepared to concede to our request on four interim measures, anything else, we do not need," Amollo wrote.

"There is nothing we can discuss between the two of us as a whole plenary do not agree on those issues. We will not be accepting any invitation to any meeting. We will not attend any meeting. It is a waste of time," he added.

Amollo responded after co-chair of the bipartisan talks Tharaka MP George Muragura, invited Azimio back to the discussion table. Addressing the media, Muragura maintained that Kenya Kwanza was committed to the talks.

"As the Kenya Kwanza side of the coalition, we are always ready for this talks. The talks can resume as early as tomorrow (Friday May 26), next week or whenever we are informed by the other side that they are ready to resume," Muragura stated.

On interfering with Jubilee Party affairs, Muragura implored Azimio to use their internal dispute resolution mechanisms to address the standoff.

The lawmaker lamented that the position taken by Azimio was putting them in a fix to contravene sections of the Constitution that grant every citizen the right of association with any political party.

"As to members going to State House or anywhere else, it is their freedom. They are free to associate in whichever manner they feel is appropriate. But Azimio, if they have any issues, let them solve them internally and in accordance with the law," he added.

The sentiments came after Jubilee Party held its National Delegates Conference attended by former President Uhuru Kenyatta. The rebel leaders led by nominated MP Sabina Chege and East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) MP Kanini Kega were kicked out during the meeting

Tharaka MP and Co-Chair of Bipartisan Parliamentary Team speaking to the press on Tuesday, May 23, 2023.


Esther Okenyuri

Jubilee reconstituted another team to steer its operations led by former Principal Secretary Saitoti Torome, who assumed the role of the party chairperson.

However, the Office of the Registrar of Political Parties (ORPP) nullified the Uhuru NDC. It recognised MPs Sabina Chege (nominated) and Kanini Kega (EALA) as party leader and secretary general, respectively. Nonetheless, a tribunal offered the Uhuru-led faction a reprieve after it barred Nominated MP Sabina Chege's wing from taking over the outfit's leadership.

Source : Kenyans.co.ke