Top Stories / 2017 Elections
Wednesday, 22 Feb 2017 17:35 EATnewsdesk@kenyafreepress.com
Opposition coalition NASA leaders Raila Odinga, Kalonzo Musyoka, Musalia Mudavadi and Moses Wetang'ula today signed the group’s framework agreement on the selection of their flag-bearer. The agreement was signed at the Okoa Kenya offices in Nairobi at a ceremony attended by hundreds of the coalition's supporters.
The NASA principles appended their signatures to the agreement, one at a time in an event interspersed with song and dance, after the 11-member coalition Coordinating Committee agreed on its terms. The agreement commits the coalition's leadership to seven programme areas should they form the government. These are National reconciliation and healing; Resolving historical injustices; Realising equality for women, youth and other disadvantaged groups; Strengthening devolution; Transforming government; Eradicating poverty and unemployment; and Realising social and economic rights.
This website yesterday reported exclusively that the technical team working on the document had determined that Mr Odinga was the most credible NASA presidential candidate. The committee's deliberations provide an elaborate framework for selecting the candidate that favoured Mr Odinga. Among these were party strength, public support beyond the candidate's ethnic base, commitment to reforms, international standing, and personal history.
To safeguard against the increased incidences of dishonoured memorandums of understanding, the NASA technical committee has proposed robust measures that will make the coalition's power-sharing agreement water-tight. The agreement will bind all the coalition's top leaders, not just the presidential candidate and his running mate. Cabinet positions will be shared in a ratio determined as part of the agreement., and agreement is applicable in all appointive positions.
Immediately after the signing, Mr Odinga, who leads the ODM party, announced that the coalition will hold its first rally in Eldoret Town on Saturday. The coalition will then head to Coast, Ukambani, North Eastern and Kajiado as part of a nationwide campaign to popularise the agreement. Two of the group's last rallies would be held in Meru and Nairobi, according to a source at the CORD secretariat briefed on the deliberations.
According to the source, the coalition seeks to project the message of a restless country, with focus on the Jubilee strongholds of Rift Valley and Mt Kenya region. "The aim of the tour will be to show that there is no 'tyranny of numbers' anymore, and that many of the voters Jubilee is counting on have long departed for the opposition," the source said.
Contacted by this website, Mr Wafula Buke from the CORD secretariat said the NASA agreement was less about power and more about changing the conditions under which Kenyans live. "And there is urgency because Kenyans have never faced so many challenges on all fronts," he said.
Jack is a business and society writer at the Kenya Free Press