Wrangles in CORD Alliance Over Nairobi Governor Race
The CORD leadership in Nairobi has been drawn into wrangles after three candidates claimed they were being coerced to step down from the gubernatorialrace.
The three, Philip Kisia (Federal party), Mutinda Kavemba (Wiper) and Eric Mokua (Ford People) said in spite of the pressure, they wont quit in favour of ODM’s Evans Kidero.
Addressing a press conference at the KICC Thursday, the candidates said they were duly nominated by their parties and will not cow under pressure of what they termed as schemes to impose one candidate by the alliance.
“There have been concerted efforts by the leadership of Cord to impose one candidate in Nairobi but we are saying no to this,” said Kisia.
Mokua added; “The people of Nairobi should be allowed to elect their favourite candidate and not to have a person imposed on them.”
Kisia accused ODM’s candidate Evans Kidero of betrayal for reneging on a deal by Cord to have him step down and become the coalition’s running mate.
The former town clerk told journalists that Cord summit chairman SK Macharia had convened a meeting at the city’s Lilian Towers where a line up for Nairobi was discussed.
The meeting that allegedly took place on January 18, was attended by Cord presidential candidate Raila Odinga, his running mate Kalonzo Musyoka and leaders Moses Wetang’ula, Cyrus Jirongo and Fred Gumo.
It was at this meeting that the Cord leadership resolved to have Margaret Wanjiru as the coalition candidate for senate, with Kisia poised to be Kidero’s running mate.
A second meeting was held at the same venue the following day to draw modalities of how the Kidero and Kisia campaign teams will be harmonised.
Kisia said that Raila personally called him on January 30, to assure him that the arrangement had not changed and he will be named Kidero’s running mate.
“I started hearing vibes that my friend Evans Kidero was not comfortable workingwith an inefficient deputy,” he said adding; “And on 31st, some people went behind my back.” This was in reference to Kidero naming youthful Jonathan Mueke as his running mate.
Consequently, in protest, Jirongo’s FPK resolved to nominate Kisia as their Nairobi gubernatorial race candidate.
“We are in the race to the end. The Cord coalition failed to hold joint nominations or even initiate structured negotiations to reach a consensus on fielding one candidate and now the clock has ticked, no moving backward,” Kavemba added.
The Cord alliance had planned to have joint nominations in Nairobi, Mombasa and Nakuru but protest from affiliate parties forced the coalition chiefs to abandon the plan.
The three will now face Kidero, TNA’s Ferdinand Waititu and APK’s Jimnah Mbaru in the fight to be the CEO of Kenya’s biggest county in terms of population and business.