The ruling Jubilee party has declined talks with Deputy President William Ruto-linked United Democratic Alliance (UDA) over a coalition agreement, but appears to tone down on expelling rebels.
According to Jubilee Vice-Chairman David Murathe, the party’s National Management Committee said the decision to terminate the coalition deal with UDA – formerly called the Party of Development and Reforms (PDR) – stands.
“UDA is no longer a coalition partner. There is no need for more conversations on that issue,” Mr Murathe said yesterday.
He, however, added that the party would not engage in battles with UDA “so long as they don’t flout the Jubilee code of conduct through insubordination and abusing leadership”.
“It is up to them to decide if they want to continue with their UDA, which may occasion by-elections but we which we think are not necessary,” Mr Murathe said.
“It is a distraction, considering that the General Election is just a year away. Let them grow their party as we grow ours.”
Mr Murathe, however, added that should UDA-linked lawmakers stop subscriptions to Jubilee, the ruling party would not hesitate to take legal action.
“We will push them out. For such MPs, we are ready to go to by-elections,” Mr Murathe said.
UDA protested to Registrar of Political Parties Anne Nderitu the decision by Jubilee to sever ties.
“As provided in the coalition agreement deposited to your office on May 30, 2018...we declare a dispute. The relevant organs of the coalition parties shall undertake the appropriate arbitration in a bid to resolve the dispute and update you on the outcome,” UDA Secretary-General Veronica Maina said.
UDA was responding to communication by Jubilee Secretary-General Raphael Tuju informing Ms Nderitu of the ruling party’s decision to revoke the deal with PDR.
Mr Tuju had told the Registrar of Political Parties that Jubilee found it improper and untenable to complete the formulation of the coalition.
“The PDR officials engaged in coalition discussions have been changed and the new ones have exhibited hostility by fielding candidates in areas outside the original places covered by the cooperation agreement,” Mr Tuju wrote.
Yesterday, Mr Murathe said the officials Jubilee engaged when it crafted the agreement with PDR had been changed without consulting MPs and ward representatives elected on the party ticket.
As such, they will not have any engagements with the new outfit, he said.
“UDA is not the same animal we entered into an agreement with,” Mr Murathe said.
Dr Ruto’s allies have vowed to remain in the Jubilee “despite being humiliated”.
Soy MP Caleb Kositany said lawmakers allied to the DP would not resign from the party.
“Resignation is cowardice. Fight from within, expose them and let them play into your tricks. How would Kenyans know there are tyrants in Jubilee if we had resigned?” Mr Kositany asked.
“We want to expose them more so that Kenyans get to know who is who by the time we get to the General Election next year. When Tuju and Murathe speak, you know who has sent them.”
Keiyo South MP Daniel Rono said the world “is watching the President mistreat his deputy”.
“Why would the DP resign to have nothing when he already has something to use as a springboard to State House?” Mr Rono asked.
Endebess MP Robert Pukose said Dr Ruto is still deputy party leader until the term Kenyans voted for Jubilee ends”.
However, Jubilee Deputy Secretary-General Joshua Kuttuny said the Deputy President “only has himself to blame for what has befallen him”.