Azimio team suspends bipartisan talks for seven days, claims Kenya Kwanza insincere

Azimio bipartisan team

Azimio team led by Otiende Omollo briefs media at Bomas of Kenya on the progress of the talks between them and members of Kenya Kwanza.

Photo credit: Francis Nderitu I Nation Media Group

The fate of bipartisan talks between Kenya Kwanza Alliance and Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition hangs in the balance after the latter suspended discussions for seven days, citing differences and a lack of goodwill. 

The Azimio team led by MP Otiende Amollo (Rarieda, ODM) said while they had acceded to a number of conditions by Kenya Kwanza, including suspension of demonstrations and avoiding remarks that could jeopardise the talks, the government side has not ceded an inch.

“We will get nowhere even with the substantive issues as our colleagues are not negotiating in good faith. Our colleagues have refused to cede to any of our issues, which has led us to believe that there is no need of going on with the talks,” Mr Amollo said.

He added that while Azimio was ready with its report on the reconstitution of the electoral commission—one of the contentious issues—which was to be discussed yesterday, the Kenya Kwanza team had no report and therefore could not proceed.

Bipartisan talks

Kenya Kwanza bipartisan team members led by George Murugari (centre) briefs media at Bomas of Kenya on the progress of the talks between them and Azimio team. 

Photo credit: Francis Nderitu I Nation Media Group

“There is no need of giving Kenyans false hope that something is going on,” Mr Amolo said.

However, Kenya Kwanza’s lead negotiator George Murugara (Tharaka, UDA) accused the Azimio team of bringing up issues that had already been discussed and concluded in last week’s meeting. He said the sub-committee on the electoral commission was to present one report, dismissing Azimio’s assertions that they were ready with their report.

“There was to be one report even when there was disagreement among them, we expected two views in it,” Mr Murugara said. 
He pointed out that as far as they are concerned, the sub-committee did not meet as some of their members were outside the country.

Mr Murugara added that they are ready to meet with Azimio after seven days to continue with the talks.