New Jubilee party to be launched next month for Uhuruto re-election

By: MACHARIA MWANGI

The new political party that President Uhuru Kenyatta aims to use to defend his seat in 2017 General Election is scheduled to be unveiled next month.

The party will be unveiled a day after all affiliate parties in Jubilee Alliance fold up in a series of national delegates conferences to be held on 17th and 18th in the city.

And speaking at the Great Rift Valley Lodge on Saturday, the steering committee co-chair Kiraitu Murungi said the newly formed party will be headed by the National Party leader and a deputy at the helm.

“This party will be owned by all Kenyans and will be based at the counties, which will enjoy semi-autonomous status,” said Mr Murungi.

He said the 12 parties creating the merger had agreed on the formation of a giant Jubilee Party devoid of ethnic connotations and one that will unite all the Kenyans.

The parties dissolving to form the new outfit include, President Uhuru Kenyatta’s The National Alliance (TNA) and that of his Deputy William Ruto’s United Republican Party (URP).

Other are Kiraitu Murungi’s APK, Narc, Jubilee Alliance Party (JAP), Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM), New Ford Kenya, Ford People, and Democratic Party among other smaller parties.

Mr Murungi said they are planning to meet governors, senators and Members of the National Assembly in the coming week as they prepare for the ultimate launch and the birth of the new political grouping.

The formation of the party, he said, was motivated by the need to fight balkanisation and negative ethnicity that the regional parties were creating.

COUNTY ACTIVATION

He said the steering committee had been mandated to develop the colour, logo and slogan of the party that will be unveiled in a fortnight.

The steering committee chairman for Political strategy, Mr Johnson Sakaja, said no party was “being swallowed,” adding that the merger was informed by common political agenda and aspirations.

“There is enough space for everyone in the new party. No one is being locked out,” he said.

Using analogy, Mr Sakaja likened the new party to the Biblical Noah’s Ark and said those who will be left out of the party will “only have themselves to blame.”

The nominated MP said they would hit the ground running and would start by county activation, a move that will see them tour all the 47 devolved units popularising the party.

Speaking on the sidelines, TNA Secretary-General Onyango Oloo said the branches will be known as counties and will enjoy more powers unlike the previous political set up.

Some of the agreed structures included a strong disciplinary committee and robust dispute resolution mechanisms.

He defended the formation of the new party, with Kenyans now getting accustomed to the formation of political outfits since the onset of the multi-party democracy in 1992.

SOURCE: DAILY NATION