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Citizen Weekly

Sunday 17 August 2014


The political differences between section of ODM MPs and their party leader Raila Odinga has taken yet a new political twist after the rebel MPs declared that they are done with Raila and come 2017, he will not see their votes should he chose to run.

Led by the Kilifi North MP Gideon Mung’aro, the MPs now seem to have declared a political war with Raila barely a few weeks after Mung’aro was stripped off his position as minority whip of Cord as they bravely announced that they are ready to dump ODM for Jubilee.

But Raila in a quick rejoinder has challenged Cord rebel MPs at the Coast led by Mung’aro to resign from their current positions and go back to the ballot if they are men enough. The same calls had earlier been made by the Mombasa governor Ali Hassan Joho.

“It is like in the World Cup and Germans are playing Argentina. You are on the German side, but instead you are scoring against your own team. Give us back our jersey and face us at the polls,” said Raila.

Mung’aro has vowed to ensure Coast people defect enmasse from ODM to teach Raila a political lesson of life.

But Raila seems to have stood his ground and it was during the burial of the late Kaya elder Mzee Pekeshe Ndeje in Rabai that Raila unleashed a scathing attack at the rebel MPs. But what is now coming out is that some of the ODM MPs who were vocal into threatening ditching ODM for Jubilee have since gone underground as they feared that their sponsoring party could revoke their membership hence a by-election.

Mung’aro hasstood his ground and this time accusing Raila of turning Pekeshe’s burial into a political arena where he dressed down the rebel MPs and the Jubilee government.

Although there had been speculations that Mung’aro would skip the burial to avoid a direct confrontation with Raila and his loyalists from the coast, he was there but steered off politics and instead eulogised the fallen hero. And to avoid being heckled and booed by the Raila supporters, he spoke for less than a minute and in his Giriama dialect.

Apart from Mung’aro, Kilifi South MP Mustapha Iddi is also a marked man but has of late gone slow in his attacks on Raila and ODM a clear indication that he fears facing a by-election should ODM withdraw his sponsorship to parliament. During the last elections, Mustafa garnered 7,305 votes against Nicholas Mrima of TIP who got 6,687 votes. Mustafa’s fear is that in case of a by-election, Cord can easily support Mrima as TIP is a coalition member of Cord.
Kwale women representative Zainab Chidzuga is also a marked politician as she has also been vocal in criticising Raila and more so Joho. She has been complaining that some Mombasa county leaders are known to take for granted elected leaders from Kilifi county.

Taita Taveta women representative Joyce Lay who during the last elections garnered 64,145 votes, is one of the women leaders who have lashed out at the Cord rebels saying they have been bought cheaply by the Jubilee government to betray their people. There have been claims that rebel Cord MPs from the coast region have been given millions to discredit Raila’s leadership.

Back to Mung’aro, he had also claimed that Raila is one of those politicians who had exploited Mzee Ndeche to get a foothold in the region’s politics, but had abandoned him at his hour of need.

Last week, Raila dismissed Mung’aro’s calls that come 2017, all Coast leaders will run on a single party ticket and to support one of their own for the presidency.

During the last elections, Cord was the most preferred party in Coast with 38 seats for the National Assembly and the Senate. Mung’aro is now promising Raila that things will not be the same again in 2017 and Raila should forget the Coast votes. He has also accused Raila of dictatorship in ODM and Cord.

Some of the leaders opposed to Raila’s leadership from the coast region include Kilifi women’s representative Aisha Khamis, Mwatate MP Andrew Mwadime, Malindi MP Dan Kazungu, Lunga Lunga MP Khatib Mwashetani (Ford Kenya), Jomvu MP Badi Twaliba (Wiper Party) and Mvita MP Abdullswamad Nassir.

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