Budget report will be concluded on Monday, Malala tells Azimio MPs
United Democratic Alliance(UDA) Secretary General Cleophas Malala now says the budget parliamentary committee will conclude its report on Monday, the day Azimio's leadership has called for mass action.
His comments could be construed to be a warning to opposition MPs that the interests of their electorates might not be taken care of if they skip the sessions to attend the planned rally.
“I have spoken with Ndindi Nyoro, the chairman of the budget committee, who informed me that he will be completing his report on the budget estimates for 2023-2024 on Monday. Therefore, we are advising the ODM MPs that the budget matters will be concluded on Monday. If they decide to attend the rally instead of the budget session, they should be aware that they will miss out on important development initiatives for their constituencies. It is essential for them to make a wise decision about whether to attend Ndindi Nyoro's meeting or engage in violent activities,” Mr Malala said.
He has also challenged opposition leader Raila Odinga to lead by example and put his family in the forefront of the mass action adding that only the Interior CS can declare a public holiday.
On party matters, Mr Malala has also maintained that he is executing orders from his party leader President William Ruto and not pursuing his ambitions.
On Sunday, though, Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua assured Kenya Kwanza affiliate parties that they will not be forced to fold and join UDA.
"That's Mr Malala's idea of making UDA a strong party. When President William Ruto and I, with our National Executive Council (Nec), decided to pick him to be the Secretary General of UDA, it was because we really appreciated his qualities, his energy, his passion and vigour. That's what we need for a party," Mr Gachagua said.
"Probably his style is a little bit different. I have discussed with him, we do not want to coerce anybody to fold up. We are happy with the existing framework, but if along the way the constituent parties consider that it is desirable to fold up and join UDA, so be it," said Mr Gachagua.
Former Kanu Secretary General Nick Salat
But speaking while receiving former Kanu Secretary General Nick Salat as a new member of UDA, Mr Malala said he was just but a spokesman of the party led by the president and his deputy.
“As the spokesperson of the UDA party, I would like to clarify that I am currently addressing the press from the party's headquarters. If I were conducting this briefing independently, I would have done it from my residence. Our party comprises NEC members and the entire secretariat who are present in this briefing and we are led by our party leader who is President William Ruto, and our Deputy President. It is essential to note that I am serving the party and not my interests,” Mr Malala added.
The former Kakamega Senator, however, changed his tune and stressed that Kenya Kwanza affiliate parties would not be forced to fold and join the ruling party.
“Our intention is not to sabotage any political party. Rather, we aim to promote our own party. With numerous political parties in the country, we are not soliciting for other parties, but rather for their members. We welcome members from other parties to join our party if they choose to do so. Our objective is to attract individuals to our party based on their personal choice, as this is what democracy entails. Therefore, political parties continue to exist, and people have the right to choose which party they want to join,” Mr Malala added.
He further clarified that they do not have any intention to break the Kenya Kwanza coalition.
“We want the people, not the party, and if the people say they want to break the party, we will have to talk to the leader,” Mr Malala added.
On his decision to join UDA, Mr Salat said: "We have decided it’s time to move on. We lost and we have agreed that we lost so we thought it was wise to join UDA because it is a young party that accommodates everybody and we wanted to give it a chance."