Nyong’o faults ODM faction over poll demands

ODM acting Party Leader Anyang Nyong’o now says he will meet members of the Caretaker Committee to avert a looming fallout in the party.

In a statement on Friday, Prof Nyong’o who is the Kisumu Senator said he appreciates the concern of members but faulted them for voicing their grievances through the media.

“Such views should be channelled to the Task Force set up by the Party Leader (Raila Odinga) to look into the way forward after the Kasarani events,” he said. The Task Force is chaired by Mr Jotham Nyukuri.

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Prof Nyong’o who is standing in for former Premier Raila Odinga was reacting to demands by of the factions in the party that there be elections within the next 45 days.

The group led by Budalang’i MP Ababu Namwamba and Mombasa Governor Hassan met in Nairobi on Wednesday night and resolved that the stalemate from the botched elections on February 28 was soiling the party’s image.

“It is our desire that elections should be held within 45 days or so because the interim team currently in office does not enjoy the mandate of the party delegates and the membership.”

“It is not good to stay in limbo and I believe majority of our members want us to sort (out) this matter and prepare to confront our rivals. You cannot face your rivals without putting your house in order first.”

The group has been seeking to take over the leadership of the party. But their plan was put on hold following a violent disruption of delegates’ conference at Kasarani last month, by the ‘Men in Black’.

After the event, ODM leaders formed a caretaker committee as the opposition party prepared for new elections in three months. The caretaker team comprises Mr Namwamba on the one hand and his rival for the secretary-general’s position, Dr Agnes Zani on the other.

One was that the party should hold fresh grassroots elections to pick new delegates, who will then elect national officials. The other was that the party’s secretariat and election board should be restructured. This position is favoured by Mr Namwamba’s rival, Dr Zani.

Prof Nyong’o said he ‘welcomes’ the demands but said they will be handled through appropriate channels.

“The Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) is a family which can discuss its internal affairs without any acrimony.

“As acting Party Leader, I will be meeting the Caretaker Committee in due course to discuss and process their suggestions in the interest of the party.”

He did not elaborate on when the meeting will happen.-nation.co.ke

PHOTO | FILE ODM acting Party Leader Anyang Nyong’o

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