John Mbadi: You can take my job as ODM chairman

John Mbadi

Nominated MP John Mbadi.

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

The Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) chairman John Mbadi has thrown yet another twist in the cracks in the Raila Odinga-led party, saying he was ready to quit his post.

Mr Mbadi, a nominated MP who was convinced to drop his Homa Bay governor ambitions in last year’s elections after three terms in Parliament, has been under fire for missing Mr Odinga’s Azimio rallies.

“It is not that I have to be the chair throughout. Nine years I have been the chair is just enough. If elections are done and someone takes it there is no problem. If any ODM members feel that they need another chairperson, I have no problem with that,” Mr Mbadi told Nation.Africa.

He shot back at critics accusing him of not attending Azimio rallies.

“Where did I say that I will be attending the rallies? Have all the officials been attending the rallies? It is Azimio rallies and not ODM,” the nominated MP said.

Swift statement

Kisumu Senator Tom Ojienda led the team which comprised MPs Gideon Ochanda (Bondo), Caroli Omondi (Suba-South), Elisha Odhiambo (Gem) Shakeel Shabir (Kisumu East), Paul Abuor (Rongo), Mark Nyamita (Uriri), Walter Owino (Awendo) and Felix Odiwuor alias Jalang’o (Langata).

Information CS Eliud Owalo was also present. Mr Shabir won on an Independent ticket while the rest were elected on an ODM ticket. 

But in a swift statement, ODM accused the legislators of trying to undermine their leader Raila Odinga, adding that their objective to press the Kenya Kwanza government to resign would go on.

“Since the victory of our party leader Raila Odinga was stolen and the will of the people subverted after the August 9, 2022 General Election, some leaders have elected to undermine the leadership of the party and chosen to go against the will of the people who elected them to positions they hold,” ODM said in a press release signed by the party’s Director of Communication Philip Etale.

This, even as Mr Odinga went out for lunch with his trusted allies—ex-Mombasa governor Hassan Joho, former Kakamega governor Wycliffe Oparanya and Suna East MP Junet Mohamed—hours after the photos of the State House meeting were made public.

“Had a refreshing lunch with my brothers. Tuko Imara! (We are strong!),” said Mr Odinga.