What you need to know:
- Jubilee deputy secretary-general and DP Ruto’s de facto spokesman Caleb Kositany said they would oppose any changes in House leadership.
- Belgut MP Nelson Koech said today’s meeting would give them an opportunity to air their displeasure on the affairs of the party.
Deputy President William Ruto is set to face his erstwhile rivals, Kanu’s Gideon Moi and CCM’s Isaac Ruto, when the Jubilee Coalition leaders meet in State House today.
Whereas the agenda has not been made public, more heads are expected to roll in the National Assembly leadership in changes the ruling party plans to make during the Jubilee Coalition Parliamentary Group meeting chaired by President Kenyatta.
Some of the likely casualties are National Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale, Majority Chief Whip Benjamin Washiali and his deputy Cecily Mbarire.
“The purge will go on even to the committee level and all those who have blatantly refused to support the President’s agenda will face the axe. For tomorrow’s (today) meeting, only the House leadership will be focused on,” a source within the ruling Jubilee Party told Nation.
Possible names that have been floated to replace the defiant allies of Mr Ruto are Navakholo MP Emmanuel Wangwe to replace Mr Washiali while Murang’a MP Sabina Chege is expected to take over from Ms Mbarire.
MPs Amos Kimunya (Kipipiri), Maoka Maore (Igembe North) and Adan Keynan (Aldas) are also said to be eyeing key parliamentary positions as Kikuyu’s Kimani Ichung’wah, who chairs the powerful Budget and Appropriation Committee, faces the axe.
An SMS from the President, who is also the Jubilee Party leader, invites the lawmakers to today’s meeting. “Mheshimiwa (honourable), I wish to invite you for a Jubilee Coalition, National Assembly Parliamentary Group Meeting, at State House Nairobi, tomorrow, Tuesday 2nd June 2020 at 9am.
‘‘Please be punctual, Uhuru Kenyatta, party leader,” the text reads.
Reached for comment yesterday, Jubilee vice chairman David Murathe was non-committal on the meeting’s agenda.
Earlier, Mr Murathe told Nation the purge that started in the Senate would continue in the National Assembly.
Even though Mr Ruto’s allies in the Senate skipped last month’s Senate PG, they said Monday they would attend today’s meeting and speak their minds.
Jubilee deputy secretary-general and DP Ruto’s de facto spokesman Caleb Kositany said they would oppose any changes in House leadership.
“We have agreed that all of us will attend the meeting, however we will not be party to the changes targeting individuals because of their association with Dr Ruto,” said Mr Kositany, who is also the Soy MP.
It is not clear whether the DP will attend the meeting. Dr Ruto, however, joined the President in commemorating the 57th Madaraka Day at State House.
Belgut MP Nelson Koech said today’s meeting would give them an opportunity to air their displeasure on the affairs of the party.
“I will attend the PG and I hope it will be a consultative meeting where we can resolve the thorny issues in the party.
‘‘We will wait and see what the party leader has for us, if it is changes, if we agree with them, we will support if not we will ensure that we air our views and have them carry the day,” he said.
Keiyo South MP Daniel Rono, another ally of the DP, said they are going to use the PG to champion for the rule of law to be adhered to when making changes in the leadership of the party arguing that in case of any changes, they will leave the President to do what he wants.
“The State House meeting will enable us champion the rule of law in the governance of the party, let there be consultations even when inking coalition deals but if there will be changes, let him do it,” said Mr Rono.
DEWHIP SOY MP
But Cherangany MP Joshua Kuttuny told the Nation that the party should also use the opportunity to dewhip Soy MP from the position of deputy secretary-general for what he termed as working against the agenda, failure to which, “some of us will commence collecting signatures to purge him”.