The National Super Alliance (NASA) co-principal, Raila Odinga, has dispelled reports that the nomination of opposition political aspirants for respective seats has caused tension among the party supporters and that it threatens the unity of the opposition outfit.
Addressing the press at a city hotel on Thursday, March 9, Odinga said that NASA will beat the April deadline as set by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) to present its candidates to the people.
A section of NASA supporters and political aspirants have been wondering, for a while now, whether the coalition will field single candidates for elective positions in the August 8 poll.
Odinga said: “A joint nomination is a minor issue. If other parties in the NASA outfit do not want the coalition to field a single candidate for a political seat, then we will conduct the nominations the way they want.”
Odinga played down speculation that he is worried about politicians, originally affiliated to the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM), defecting from the party, saying that the party honors democracy.
“Anyone defecting from Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) Party to other parties is normal,” said Odinga.
The ODM party leader had in February, 2017 assured all aspirants that the party will hold free and fair nominations.
Speaking to the media in Kisii then, after a closed-door-meeting with all ODM aspirants, Mr Odinga assured that no candidate will be discriminated against.
He said: “We are at a crucial stage in the election process and we are ready to ventilate on all issues. We want all party members to remain united even after the nominations,” he said.
Political parties have between March 9 and March 19 to submit membership lists.
According to the new schedule, political parties will hold their primaries on April 20, 2017 ahead of delivery of nomination papers to IEBC by political party and independent candidates between May 8, 2017 and May 20.