Moses Kuria dissolves his Chama Cha Kazi party, to merge with UDA

Moses Kuria

Trade and Industry CS Moses Kuria. 

Photo credit: Dennis Onsongo | Nation Media Group

Cabinet nominee for Trade and Industry, Moses Kuria has officially kicked off process of merging his Chama Cha Kazi (CCK) with United Democratic Alliance (UDA) of President William Ruto.

In Dr Ruto's monolith plan, there is push to have all leaders of Kenya Kwanza Alliance affiliate parties and in State positions fold up their parties for the sake of having one party akin to the former ruling Jubilee party behemoth.

CCK party, in a notice in today's dailies signed by chairman James Kogi, Secretary General James Nage and Executive Director Philip Muchiri, told its members they have three weeks to submit their views in favour of or contrary to the plan.

"Chama Cha Kazi would like to issue notice to all the members pursuant to and in accordance with Article 10.0.1 (b) of the Chama Cha Kazi Constitution of the decision to merge Chama Cha Kazi with the United Democratic Alliance. Members are invited to file their submissions supporting or opposing the merger the Secretary General within 21 days hereof," reads the notice.

This means if members endorse the merger, the CCK will file with the Registrar of Political Parties Anne Nderitu their intention to merge with UDA. This will lead to the former losing its individual identity.

According to the Political Parties Act, upon receipt of the request, the Registrar shall gazette within seven days the dissolution of CCK.

Thereafter, Ms Nderitu will also remove Chama Cha Kazi particulars including its name, symbols, logo, slogan, and colours from the register, and the same will not be available for registration by any person as a political party in the subsequent election following the merger.

She will also transfer the records, assets, liabilities, rights, and obligations of Chama Cha Kazi to UDA including their entitlement to the Political Parties Fund under section 25 of the Act.

This comes as political bigwigs are set to relinquish their party positions before taking oath of office to serve in different dockets within the Kenya Kwanza government.

The law bars State Officers from holding office in political parties.

The constitutional provision is also set to affect Amani National Congress (ANC) leader Musalia Mudavadi, former National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi of Democratic Party, Maendeleo Chap Chap’s Alfred Mutua and Eliud Owalo, the deputy secretary general of UDA responsible for policy and strategy.

Only the President, Deputy President and MPs are exempted by the provision since they are elected through universal suffrage.

“A full-time State officer shall not participate in any other gainful employment. Any appointed State officer shall not hold office in a political party,” reads Article 77 (1, 2) of the Constitution.

Kimilili MP Didmus Barasa said Kenya Kwanza will have only one party which is UDA and they expect those in the Cabinet to disband their parties.

“All those who have been appointed Cabinet Secretaries will now fold up their parties so that we have one party, one government and one coalition. Kuria is already leading by example,” said Mr Barasa.

Ms Nderitu said that the party leaders can, however, still remain members of their respective outfits.

“Once you become a State officer, you have to resign as a party official. You can, however, still remain as a party member. You cannot serve as a State officer and at the same time hold a party position,” said Ms Nderitu in a previous interview.

In Uhuru Cabinet, Cabinet Secretaries like Fred Matiang’i, Eugene Wamalwa and Ukur Yatani had United Progressive Alliance (UPA), Democratic Action Party of Kenya (DAP-K) and United Party of Independence Alliance (UPIA) respectively but managed them through other leaders so as to not go against Article 77 (2).