The Azimio la Umoja One Kenya coalition party has moved to stem disquiet among constituent party members by resolving to be more inclusive in its decision-making.
A meeting called after eight parties raised concerns has also stated that there will be no zoning, allowing even the fringe parties to participate in the elections.
ODM party leader and Azimio-One Kenya presidential flag bearer Raila Odinga’s Thursday meeting was necessitated by complaints raised by eight of the over twenty parties that make up the grand coalition.
The parties, including Alfred Mutua’s Maendeleo Chap Chap, Kivutha Kibwana’s Muungano Party, and Charity Ngilu’s NARC amongst others had complained of several issues including exclusion from important matters and decisions.
The complaints were still reverberating across town at a meeting called by one of the parties, Mutua’s Maendeleo Chap Chap.
“We just signed a page, on the belief that we will be given the rest of the document, because we had been told the contents. But since that time we have been denied the document,” Mutua, who is also the Machakos County governor, claimed.
These concerns were put to rest after the meeting brought together representatives of eleven political parties, at least according to Raila’s presidential campaign secretariat spokesman Prof. Makau Mutua.
The Azimio-One Kenya team also agreed to address inclusivity concerns that had been raised in a communique by the eight parties.
“It was decided that the top organ of Azimio, which is the coalition council, will have 11 members drawn from the constituent parties; that is inclusive and will be able to address this question of inclusion of political parties, whether they’re small of large,” said Prof. Makau.
The parties had also raised issue with alleged plans to implement zoning in the August elections, saying their candidates had already registered to vie for different seats in the elections.
However, according to Prof. Makau: “There would be no zoning, and there has been no zoning for the country for the political parties, any political party is free to campaign.”
Prof. Kibwana, who also attended the meeting, says concerns raised by the eight parties were not meant to cause jitters in the coalition, but to strengthen and rally constituent parties in one unified direction.
“These political parties have a contribution to make, they want to belong, they have a following in the country, and we don’t want to fight Jubilee, ODM or Wiper…because if we do so, then we shall have lost sight of the big picture,” said Prof. Kibwana, who is also the Makueni governor.
These sentiments were echoed by Charity Ngilu, the Kitui County boss, who says the parties in the coalition are now speaking in one voice, with one goal.
“It’s not about any of us…it’s not about this party or the other party…we came together because we believe that we’re like-minded…we did not come together because I want to be this or that, and everybody who has come on board has said country first,” said Governor Ngilu.
The Azimio -One Kenya meeting also resolved to handle the running mate question through consultation, analysis of data and evidence, at the appropriate time.