Musalia Mudavadi’s ANC has pledged to field candidates against Deputy President William Ruto’s UDA outfit, sparking a fresh row over zoning.
The ANC party on Thursday warned that “enough is enough” over what they termed as a “big boy syndrome” by the United Democratic Alliance.
At a press conference, ANC secretary general Simon Kamau insisted the party was dissatisfied with the way some of its candidates are being treated by UDA.”We want the UDA secretary general Veronica Maina to publicly condemn reports that the party is pushing for a six-piece suit,” Kamau said at Amani House.
The ANC said it had been angered by incidents where some of its candidates in Mt Kenya and Nairobi regions are being isolated.
“We are all in the Kenya Kwanza Alliance but each affiliate party should be allowed to field candidates without any intimidation.”
ANC cited an incident in which a meeting for Murang’a UDA aspirants led by the party’s legal affairs head Edward Muriu resolved to back party aspirants only.
“He (Muriu) addressed the media where he insisted that voters should vote in favour of UDA terming the other parties in Kenya Kwanza as ‘Matangari’ (which means tattered clothes),” Kamau said.
In the statement co-signed by Irungu Nyakera, Kamau said the remarks were derogatory, shameful and against the spirit of Kenya Kwanza demonstrated by the principals.
“Such reckless statements negatively affect the candidature of the Kenya Kwanza presidential candidate William Ruto to the advantage of our opponents as it would lead to voter apathy,” they said.
The position taken by ANC could set the stage for a bruising political showdown in Murang’a county where the party said it will support Nyakera for the governor’s seat.
This means Nyakera, the leader of the Farmers Party, an affiliate in the Kenya Kwanza alliance, will vie against Ruto-backed Senator Irungu Kang’ata.
But ANC on Thursday defended its decision to withdrawal its candidate Mike Gathogo in favour of Nyakera, saying the contest would be a friendly match.“We believe that with Nyakera, we now make the victory for the seat an easy possibility for the Kenya Kwanza,” Kamau said.
Nyakera said the ANC move to throw its weight behind him was an act of goodwill aimed at consolidating the alliance’s chances of winning the seat.
“I wish to thank the ANC party and its leader for the support, what we are looking forward to is to deliver the seat for the coalition,” he said.
However, the ANC move might not sit well with UDA which is spiritedly campaigning for Kang’ata as the KK alliance candidate.
The Jubilee Party, which is allied to the Azimio la Umoja of Raila Odinga, is fielding Jamleck Kamau.
ANC Kibra parliamentary aspirant Malasen Hamida who is running against UDA’s Macdonald Mariga complained of concerted efforts by Ruto’s party to push for a six-piece vote.
The aspirant who accompanied the ANC secretary general and Nyakera warned UDA against “pushing us to the wall” with its six-piece vote campaign, saying that would be counter productive.
“There is no monopoly of decisions,” she said at a press conference held at the ANC party headquarters.
Musalia’s party is fielding a number of MP and MCA aspirants in Nairobi and other parts of Mt Kenya where UDA is perceived to be having an upper hand over its KK partners.