ODM has threatened to discipline members opening party offices without express authority from the national office in a move that appears to target businessman Jimi Wanjigi.

In a statement released by secretary-general Edwin Sifuna on Wednesday, the party warned that such moves will henceforth attract disciplinary action.

Sifuna issued the warning after a meeting of the party’s top decision making organ– the central committee – chaired by party leader Raila Odinga.

“We have received alarming reports that there are some members of the party purporting to open offices in the grassroots without reference or consultations with the national office,” Sifuna said.

“We wish to remind all members that whenever there is a need to open any party office, the same must be done in consultation with the national office failure to which such offices will not be recognised,” he added.

Sifuna added that the opening of such offices amounts to brazen violation of the party’s rules.

Wanjigi, who has declared interest to vie for president on the party’s ticket in 2022, has been opening party officers across the country, especially in Central region.

The action has landed him in trouble with the party honchos who have accused him of not consulting the national office.

Wanjigi is keen to challenge Raila for the party ticket for the country’s top seat in next year’s polls.

The meeting also ratified the extension of the ongoing registration of ordinary members, from September 30 to December 31.

“Given the success we have witnessed and the desire from the public to join the party in the last three months, we resolved to extend the free membership registration for ordinary members,” Sifuna said.

Meanwhile, the party has called on the IEBC to deploy sufficient resources, both human and material, to ensure the upcoming voter registration is a success.

The mass voter listing starts on Monday, with the commission targeting to register at least seven million new members as it prepares to conduct the general election in August next year.

In 2017, the country’s voter number stood at slightly over 19 million.

“Out of the seven million targeted new voters, we have noticed that more than half of the number is in our party’s traditional strongholds of Nyanza, Western, Coast and Nairobi. We implore on the IEBC to deploy commensurate resources in those regions,” Sifuna said.

The SG urged all party leaders at the grassroots and all members elected and nominated on the party ticket to retreat to their respective areas to coordinate and support voter registration.

He called on the party members to mobilise people to collect their identity cards for purposes of voter registration.

By The Star Kenya

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