Corridors Of Power: Disquiet in Ukambani over community’s political future
The disquiet in Ukambani over the community’s political future is becoming acutely distressing to many people. Since Monday last week, politicians and professionals have met several times to chart the way forward for the region that voted largely for NASA. A major concern: If flagbearer Raila Odinga boycotts the October 26 presidential rerun, where will that leave running mate Kalonzo Musyoka politically? To them, the Kamba nation will be the biggest loser. On Monday evening, three Wiper MPs and a former governor aspirant met at a Nairobi hotel on Mombasa Road to discuss the community’s fate.
Could there be plans to temporarily relocate the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission away from Anniversary Towers in Nairobi’s CBD — to the Bomas of Kenya? A mole within the commission tells Corridors that as the chaotic NASA anti-IEBC demonstrations are now held three days a week, a move to Bomas “somewhat far from town” might be a good idea. It would end the disruption of business around the downtown building. And it would be easy for police to control demonstrators at Bomas, which has only one access gate.
Has Hassan Omar abandoned his ideals? The principled man who spent most of his time fighting the establishment has set tongues wagging with his about-turn. Hassan is said to have been at the centre of identification of ICC witnesses in the case against DP William Ruto and President Uhuru Kenyatta. Ruto and Hassan engaged in ugly spats over the matter as Ruto apparently believed the ex-Kenya National Commission of Human Rights commissioner was among people who wanted him jailed at The Hague. When he entered politics, Hassan linked Jubilee to all manner of ills, including the disappearance of Muslim clerics at the Coast. So when did Ruto become Hassan’s mentor, as he claimed on Sunday? Just like ex-Budalang’i MP Ababu Namwamba — who once said if his blood is mixed with Jubilees, it forms a fatal clot — Hassan has pulled a surprise. Now he may help Ruto’s 2022 presidential bid.
Jubilee legislators yesterday had a field day in Parliament, taunting their NASA counterparts that have to pay their supporters to participate in anti-IEBC demonstrations in some perceived NASA strongholds. Four Jubilee MPs were overheard in the corridors telling NASA legislators to come clean and stop funding protests — if the people support their genuine cause. Another challenged them to account for the money recently collected from Kenyans, some in an M-Pesa account, to fund Raila Odinga’s presidential bid. They said that could be the money used to pay demonstrators.