Former Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly Farah Maalim says Jubilee Party’s dismal showing in the recently held by-elections is neither an approval of Deputy President William Ruto nor a disapproval of President Uhuru Kenyatta.
Speaking on TV47’s Morning Cafe, Maalim said these victories were purely a revolt by voters in the Mount Kenya region who are saying “don’t push anyone (candidate) down our throats.”
Maalim appeared on the show with Kisii Deputy Governor Joash Maangi, and Ndaragwa MP Jeremiah Kioni. They were discussing ‘State of The Nation’ with show host Linda Alela.
The discussion took a broad view of longevity- or lack thereof- of parties, and the future of Jubilee. The ruling party, headed by President Kenyatta, lost the Kiambaa Constituency by-election to a candidate from United Democratic Alliance, a party associated with Deputy President William Ruto. Ruto and Uhuru, though erstwhile political friends -first winning elections on a joint ticket in 2013 and again in 2017, have since fallen out.
In May this year, Jubilee lost Rurii Ward MCA seat to UDA, and again in Nakuru’s London Ward. The losses have shaken Jubilee to the core. Several of its prominent members including Nakuru Governor Lee Kinyanjui, have called for removal from office of Vice-Chairman David Murathe and Secretary General Raphael Tuju.
“Those are statements easier said than done,” opined Kioni. “There is no politician you will tell ‘walk out’ and he walks.”
Maalim said political parties in Kenya “have absolutely no meaning.”
“Parties are supposed to have an ideological base,” he added. “They are supposed to be formidable and stay for the longest time. If you look at the ANC (in South Africa), it’s over 100 years ago. If you look at us here, parties have ceased to have any meaning other than having power. “