NASA principals gang-up against Raila over swearing in
All is not well in the NASA coalition after a crisis meeting called to resolve a simmering disquiet in the opposition ended in a stalemate.
The Monday meeting had a rocky start as Raila Odinga’s co-principals ganged up to oppose the January 30 swearing in and demand respect from the ODM Party following claims that the party had short changed other affiliates in the sharing of parliamentary leadership slots.
The meeting between the four NASA principals was conducted in high secrecy, the leaders choosing to hold the crisis talks at the Karen Country Club, away from the public eye.
Minutes before 5pm, Raila Odinga’s convoy drove off signaling the end of a meeting that sources described as tense and inconclusive.
The high level of secrecy exhibited by the principals and their handlers is a clear indication that all was not well within the coalition.
Between 1pm and 2.30pm, Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka hosted FORD-Kenya leader Moses Wetangula and his Amani National Congress counterpart Musalia Mudavadi at his Karen residence.
Multiple sources told Citizen TV that during the meeting, the three principals sought to take a common stand against the planned swearing in, a position that would isolate Mr. Odinga were they to take a vote on the matter.
Musyoka and Wetangula are said to have been firmly against the Odinga oath, while Mudavadi was non-committal on the matter.
As Musyoka, Wetangula and Mudavadi met, Odinga was waiting for the confirmation of the venue that was shifted to two different places before settling on the Karen Country Club.
Sources have further revealed that the principals discussed the merits and demerits of a Raila Odinga and Kalonzo Musyoka inauguration.
With Odinga having reassured his supporters that he will be sworn in on January 30, his team is reported to be wary of a possible backlash from supporters should they call off the inauguration for a second time. The Odinga camp is also yet to settle on an alternative route that would appease supporters and sustain the anti-jubilee rhetoric.
Monday’s talks were, however, inconclusive, with the principals giving themselves one more day to deliberate on the matter.
The friction over the sharing of slots in Parliament was also on the table, with Odinga being tasked to engage his ODM Party to relinquish one slot from the Parliamentary Service Commission in favour of Wiper.
The two slots went to ODM’s Aisha Jumwa and Homa Bay Woman Representative Gladys Wanga. The Orange party, however, argues it has over 60 percent of the coalition seats in parliament therefore deserves more slots.
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