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Kakamega MPs to skip Atwoli’s meeting to name presidential candidate

COTU secretary general Francis Atwoli during a past workshop. /FILE

A section of MPs from Kakamega county have said that they will not attend a meeting organised by COTU secretary general Francis Atwoli.

Atwoli plans to use the December 31 fete at Muliro Gardens to declare the Luhya community’s preferred presidential candidate.

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MPs Benjamin Washiali (Mumias East), Emmanuel Wangwe (Navakholo), Andrew Toboso (Butere), Bernard Shinali (Ikolomani) Malulu Injendi (Malava), David Were (Matungu) and Benjamin Andola (Khwisero) have said they will not attend since they are not aware of the meeting’s agenda.

Speaking separately to the Star, the lawmakers slammed the COTU boss for sidelining them in the journey of identifying the community’s spokesperson.

“Luhya nation is bigger than one person. Atwoli should have consulted other leaders from the region before settling on a candidate of his choice,” Washiali said.

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Wangwe said: “Atwoli has always been supporting the opposition. He is hell-bent on picking the community’s spokesperson from among his friends. We will reject such candidate,”

He said the community requires a focused, non-partisan leader who is full of wisdom and can address issues of the community without political interests.

For his part, Were said the COTU boss doesn’t mingle freely with all the people of Luhya community and cannot understand the best leader for the group.

“I have a lot of respect to my brother and good friend Atwoli. But this is a hefty issue that surpasses him as an individual,” Were said.

 

However, Lugari MP Ayub Savula said he will attend the December 31 meeting saying it will remain in the history of the Luhya community as a day to remember.

“Atwoli’s decision should be followed by all Luhyas. It is for the good of all the people of Western region,” Savula said.

He made the comments when he accompanied Amani leader Musalia Mudavadi to Butere on a meet-the-people tour.

Maendeleo Democratic Party secretary general Martin Andati said the move will divide the Luhya community and scuttle unity efforts.

Andati claimed the deal was reached at Tom Mboya Labour College in Kisumu only between Atwoli and a senior politician in the country.

“We have full information of who will be declared as the spokesperson and those who spearheaded the move,” he said.

“We also understand who the financers of this move are and their intentions to have the aspirant declared as the community’s flag bearer,” Andati said.

Atwoli, in his briefing on the meeting, asked those who are not interested in the plan to stay home and follow the proceedings on television.

-the-star.co.ke

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