Politics

Ledama reveals why ODM is opposed to his CPAIC election 

The vocal ODM politician has denounced his earlier post on Facebook, where he wrote (Enaidura….), meaning departure, saying he did not mean to signal his looming resignation from ODM, but that he was urging his supporters to be transformed from their old way of thinking

By Jonathan Teikan

Narok Senator Ledama ole Kina says his tenacious stand in defending the interest of the Maa community, regarding historical land injustices and equitable access to government job opportunities, is the main reason why he was “” de whipped from the Senate committees.

Furthermore, he also said that he has been accused of being; a vocal critic of the government, and an independent-minded leader in the execution of his oversight role, besides having been leading a relentless fight in defense of the rights of the marginalized communities, a matter he said has not augured well for senior government chiefs.

He cited the case where he openly criticized the appointment of Lt-Gen Robert Kibochi to succeed Kenya Defence Force boss Gen Samson Mwathethe, at the expense of the Army Commander Lt-Gen Walter ole Raria, whom he said was more experienced.

Through a tweet, Ledama said: “Even KDF is tribal? This is truly a messed up country. The most qualified military man to succeed Gen Samson Mwathethe was Lit-Gen Walter Raria, but just because he is a Maasai he is left out and a staff deputy is appointed. Very unfortunate!”

The vocal ODM politician, made the claims during a live interview at a local radio station, days after the Senate Minority Leader James Orengo wrote to Speaker Kenneth Lusaka, notifying him of the opposition’s decision to remove him from CPAIC and the House Business Committee (SBC), four days after he was elected CPAIC chair.

“I hereby give notice of the discharge and removal of Senator Ledama ole Kina from the CPAIC and SBC,” Mr Orengo said in the notice to the Speaker dated May 7.

Before May 4 election, he said, ODM party leader Raila Odinga, despite having not raised any objection to his candidature, held a secret meeting with Mr Orengo and other contestants, but only in his exclusion, and only came to know of it after the election.

That notwithstanding, he contested for the position and emerged a winner, with the support of a Tanga tanga allied Jubilee party vote. He garnered five votes against his Kisii counterpart Sam Ongeri who got four. The latter is reported to be the party’s preferred candidate for the position.

Refuting claims by his critics, that he suffered the fate as a consequence of his insubordination to the party’s cause, Ledama said the battle is not about him as an individual, but the voiceless majority who will suffer if he reneges from his sworn mandate to oversight the Executive wing of the government.

He claimed that at a recent meeting with Raila Odinga, it became apparent that the Siaya Senator was acting on an order from above, by frustrating his successful bid to clinch the coveted position.

“My father (Raila Odinga) accosted me for always complaining when the members of my community are not considered for government job opportunities, and for my staunch stand on the Kedong ranch issue, which I was informed that I have been rubbing some senior government officials the wrong way, and for that matter, they never wanted me to be the chair of the committee,” he said.

He said he was then ordered to resign, or he gets removed, as his “extreme” position on land issues could complicate the chances for the Building Bridges Initiative — being spearheaded by President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader — to sail through.

Asked why then he has not heeded to his boss’ order, he said, “Raila Odinga has never asked me not to vie for the post,” indicating that he could have otherwise shelved his ambitions if he was advised to that effect, but he now maintains that, having been duly elected, he will fight tooth and nail in defense of his position.

“I will teach them the law, because they seem to lack a gist of it.”

He also denounced his early post on Facebook, where he wrote (Enaidura….), meaning departure, and he was hugely understood, to be giving a signal to his supporters that he will be quitting the party.

He said: “I did not mean quitting from the party, but that we need to transform from our old way of thinking.”

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