President William Ruto hosted A section of Members of Parliament affiliated to the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party at State House on Tuesday, February 7.
The MPs who joined Ruto and his deputy Rigathi Gachagua for the breakfast include Gideon Ochanda (Bondo), Elisha Odhiambo (Gem), Mark Nyamita (Uriri), Caroli Omondi (Suba South), Shakeel Shabir (Kisumu East, Independent) Felix Odiwuor alias Jalang’o (Lang’ata), Paul Abuor (Rongo), John Owino (Awendo) and Kisumu Senator Tom Ojienda.
The meeting comes just two days after the disgruntled former Prime Minister launched a new youth resistance outfit dubbed Movement for the Defence of Democracy at Kamukunji grounds in Kibra.
According to a s statement from State House, the head of state held a consultative meeting with MPs from Nyanza as a follow-up on Ruto’s visit to the region in January. “Leaders must join hands, foster coexistence and work together in confronting the challenges facing our country. They must endeavor to lead by example and serve the interest of the people. This is a sure route to a more united and developed Kenya,” it read.
Ruto’s pointman in Nyanza and Cabinet Minister for ICT Eliud Owalo posted on twitter after the meeting ” I have been honored, this morning, to attend a development priorities dialogue session between His Excellency the President, Dr. William Ruto, PhD, CGH, and a team of Members of Parliament from Nyanza. Also in attendance was the Deputy President, Hon. Rigathi Gachagua.” The meeting with the MPs allied to Raila Odinga comes after a similar one with those from President Uhuru’s Jubilee party in January.
In response to the Statehouse meeting, the ODM party has criticized the ODM leaders saying they chose to undermine the party’s leadership and go against the will of the people who elected them to their positions. In a statement signed by the ODM Director of Communications Phillip Etale, ODM said the legislators’ visit to State House did not come as a surprise because some of them were being monitored in the run-up to the visit.
“The visit to State House this morning by a section of ODM Members of Parliament has not come as a surprise to the party and the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Movement,” the statement read adding that the party has been monitoring closely the behind-the-scenes activities involving some of them and today was just the climax.
The party claimed that the “illegitimate administration” had resorted to using stolen money to dupe some leaders in order to thwart ODM’s planned countrywide rallies.
“Three months ago, the Azimio la Umoja leadership began rallies to push for the reclamation of its victory from the hands of the illegitimate administration in order to provide the leadership Kenyans want, but all along, we knew the enemy will not sit pretty,” the statement adds.