Wiper Party has remained tight-lipped on reports stating that its leader, Kalonzo Musyoka, will announce his return to Azimio La Umoja on Monday, May 30.
Insiders who spoke to Kenyans.co.ke stated that Kalonzo will make the announcement at a grand rally in Kilgoris, Narok County then proceed to Suswa on Tuesday, May 31.
Kalonzo will thereafter embark on a five-day Ukambani tour to campaign for Azimio La Umoja flagbearer, Raila Odinga.
The former Vice President is currently on a tour in the United Kingdom and is expected to fly back on Sunday to meet the National Executive Council (NEC) where the decision to return to Azimio will be ratified.
Wiper aspirants, on Monday, May 23, voted in favour of Kalonzo’s return in a lengthy meeting in Machakos county.
However, speaking to Kenyans.co.ke, Wiper Secretary General, Chirau Ali Mwakwere, played cagey with the reports, neither denying nor confirming, but gave an insight on the state of affairs in Wiper.
Mwakwere stated that there are levels at which Wiper makes its decisions and the topmost organ is the National Executive Council.
He reiterated that the National Delegates Conference (NDC) confirmed, and he as the Secretary General affirmed, that Kalonzo will run for the presidency on August 9, and the decision stays.
“Kalonzo can decline or give guidance as the party leader (on aspirants voting to have him rejoin Azimio La Umoja). Nonetheless, Wiper has not changed its stance on him being on the ballot.
“We do not operate on speculation such as the rally slated for Monday as your sources intimate. This does not mean we are not ready to consult and engage other parties. The purpose of forming a party is to be in government,” Mwakwere stated.
Makueni MP and Kalonzo’s close ally, Dan Maanzo, also concurred with Mwakwere and told Kenyans.co.ke that so far, Kalonzo will be on the ballot.
Pressure on Kalonzo
Sources closer to Kalonzo had earlier told this publication that one of the reasons they voted to return to Azimio La Umoja was hinged on their budgets and spending.
Most of the aspirants had already spent millions of shillings branding their campaign merchandise with Raila as the presidential candidate.
They had also adopted Azimio La Umoja’s colours, white and blue, and were in a quandary on whether to support Raila or be refunded to rebrand their materials with Kalonzo as the presidential aspirant.
Mwakere played down the reports, stating that those in dilemma may be one or two individuals who were at liberty to express their minds and positions.
“It is okay with us when three or four join hands to state their desires and wishes. Even I can ask a few people to make a press statement but that won’t be the position of the party.
“We conduct our business in the open,” he responded.
Nevertheless, he declined to comment on whether Wiper was open to refunding the politicians, insisting that he cannot comment on a matter that has not yet been officially brought to his attention.
“But who does not spend money in business?” the former Cabinet Minister joked.
Kalonzo Meeting Uhuru Abroad
The Wiper leader’s UK tour coincided with President Uhuru Kenyatta’s trip to Geneva, Switzerland. Uhuru, on May 22, addressed the first in-person regular session of the World Health Assembly since the pandemic broke out in 2020.
Speculations were rife that Uhuru and Kalonzo met abroad to deliberate on the latter joining Azimio, reports Mwakwere further refuted.
“The ground is fertile for conclusions, allegations and speculations. People travel overseas all the time and some trips are planned months ahead,” he noted.
Insiders close to President Uhuru’s circle told Kenyans.co.ke that the parties within Azimio La Umoja were engaged in various meetings to share power.
A secret committee tasked with creating a power sharing formula was said to have been formed, and handpicked by Uhuru and Raila.
Jubilee and ODM were said to be battling for the Interior docket and the National Assembly Speaker position despite the latter already being given the green light to have Kenneth Marende as the Speaker of the Senate.
Wiper will only be part of the negotiations if Kalonzo returns to Azimio, and so far, no slot has been left open for it.
Mwakwere, when asked if Wiper will have any negotiation power upon rejoining Azimio, responded by stating that the matter has not also been brought to his attention.
“Those are pure speculations lest we are formally informed. I cannot discuss a non-concrete issue.”
Sourced from Kenyans