A political showdown is expected to rock the ruling Kenya Kwanza after a number of leaders previously loyal to the coalition’s individual affiliate parties ditched the outfits for the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) led by President William Ruto.
In a statement on Tuesday, UDA Secretary General Cleophas Malala revealed that the ruling party was forced to postpone its grassroots elections to facilitate the admission of the new members.
According to Malala, the most affected parties are Chama Cha Kazi, headed by Public Service CS Moses Kuria, and Maendeleo ChapChap led by Tourism CS Alfred Mutua.
Other affected parties are FORD- Kenya led by National Assembly Speaker Moses Wetangula and the Amani National Congress (ANC) led by Prime Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi.
A photo of UDA Secretary-General Cleophas Malalah.
“We pushed ahead the UDA Party grassroots elections to accommodate new members joining the Party especially those officials from Chama cha Kazi, ChapChap, ANC, and Ford-Kenya to form one formidable Party,” read the statement issued by Malala.
On Saturday, November 18, the party announced the postponement of party elections initially scheduled to take place in December 2023 to April 2024.
“Following a National Steering Council (NSC) meeting held on November 18, 2023, and chaired by the Party Leader William Ruto. The United Democratic Alliance party (UDA) wishes to notify all members and aspirants that the grassroots elections initially scheduled for December 9, 2023, have been postponed,” read a notice that Malala had shared in part.
“The elections will be staggered into three clusters, taking place on the 12th, 19th, and 26th of April 2024. A detailed schedule outlining county clusters will be released in due course.”
A day later, Belgut Member of Parliament (MP) Nelson Koech attributed the postponement to the ongoing El Nino rains.
He argued that should the ruling party carry out the elections in December, it would expose its leaders as insensitive since thousands of its members live in areas affected by the heavy downpour.
“It will be very insensitive for us politicians to campaign against the backdrop of a nation that is suffering the effects of flooding and excess rainfall,” the lawmaker stated.
The onboarding of members onto UDA kicked off in March 2023.
Photo of UDA Headquarter in Nairobi