List of Jubilee MPs who are now facing the axe after Kang’ata ouster

Wednesday, February 10th, 2021 00:00 |
Murang’a Senator Irungu Kang’ata addresses the press at KICC in Nairobi after he was kicked out as Jubilee Party Majority Whip yesterday. Photo/PD/Samuel Kariuki

A day after the governing Jubilee Party expelled six senators, the axe now heads to the National Assembly in what is shaping up as a renewed purge against Deputy President William Ruto’s allies.

The revelation came the same day the ruling party’s Parliamentary Group met and resolved to kick out its Senate Chief Whip Irungu Kang’ata for misconduct.

People Daily learned yesterday that those targeted for removal are Nominated MPs David Sankok, Gideon Keter, Cecily Mbarire and Halima Mucheke.

Sources at the Jubilee headquarters confided that just like their colleagues in the Senate, the MPs stand accused of defying and disrespecting the party and its leadership.

A show cause letter to the four legislators has already been drafted and is expected to be relayed to them this morning.

“They have continuously contravened the Jubilee Party constitution, the Political Parties Act and even openly contradicted the party position in matters BBI and Handshake,” said a high profile source who sought anonymity.

“You have even seen them lately advancing policies and ideologies of a rival party in the name of United Democratic Alliance (UDA) whose symbol is a wheelbarrow. They must vacate,” the source added.

Yesterday, the expelled senators got a reprieve when the Political Parties Tribunal suspended the decision.

The six are Isaac Mwaura, Mary Seneta, Falhada Dekow, Naomi Waqo, Victor Prengei and Millicent Omanga.

 Desma Nungo, who chairs the tribunal, further restrained the Registrar of Political Parties from removing the names of the senators from the membership of Jubilee Party pending the hearing and determination of their case.

“Pending hearing and determination of this application inter-parties, this tribunal hereby stays any further implementation of Jubilee Party decision dated February 8 to expel the applicants from the party,” the order reads. The cases will be mentioned on February 16 and 17.

The senators, through lawyer Hillary Sigei, moved to the tribunal, arguing that there was imminent danger if Parliament were convened and the Speaker or Registrar of Political Parties takes action, as this would prejudice them.

In resolving to kick out outspoken Murang’a Senator Kang’ata as Majority Chief  Whip yesterday, the party said he had committed a number of transgressions. He was replaced with his Kiambu counterpart Kimani Wamatangi.

Addressing a press conference shortly after holding a Jubilee Party coalition Parliamentary Group meeting at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC), Jubilee secretary general Raphael Tuju said the party had arrived at the unanimous decision after considering a series of contraventions, including a breach of confidentiality.

Party meetings

Tuju said that Senator Kang’ata (Murang’a) got himself in the cross hairs by failing to attend key party meetings and poor handling of confidential information.

He, however, brushed off claims that Kang’ata was removed because of his controversial letter to President Uhuru Kenyatta last month, claiming that the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) was unpopular in Mount Kenya region.

Tuju said that while the senator was within his rights to express his opinion to the President, the party had an issue with the manner in which he did it.

“We thought, he would realise that there is a way of addressing sensitive issues to party leadership with decorum, especially when the leadership includes the President,” Tuju said.

Despite being invited by the party top brass to a meeting to shed light on his letter, he the leaked it to the public, Tuju said, adding that the senator declined numerous invitations extended to him.

But the straw that broke the camel’s back, was the senator’s decision to reveal details of a closed-door meeting by the party leadership to the media and his friends.

“You don’t kiss and tell, when we meet as a leadership you are required to keep the confidentiality of the meeting, and what it is we have discussed but if after talking immediately you go out and expose us and what we discussed; it is unacceptable and that was his biggest failure as a leader,” Tuju emphasised.

However,  Deputy President William Ruto’s allies  laughed off Kang’ata’s ouster, alleging that out of 38 members of Jubilee coalition, only 24 were present in yesterday’s meeting.

They claimed that of the 24, nine are allied to the Tanga Tanga faction leaving the Kieleweke wing with only 15 members, less than the 20 required to remove Kang’ata.

Addressing journalists at KICC after storming out of the PG, nine Senators led by Elgeyo Marakwet’s Kipchumba Murkomen and his Meru counterpart Mithika Linturi, said they walked out of the room after members were asked to sign an attendance list and a resolution form to sanction Kang’ata’s removal.

Terming the process illegal, Murkomen said there was no “show cause” letter sent to Kang’ata before the decision was made.

“Out of the 20 senators required, I can say without any fear of contradiction that they have only 15; they don’t have requisite numbers but what is going to happen, mostly likely, as they have done before, Senate Speaker Kenneth Lusaka will do his normal fraud to announce figures that do not exist; I am sure he will not even make a ruling, he will do exactly what he did to us,” Murkomen, who is a former Senate Majority Leader, said.

New normal

He went on: “He (Speaker Lusaka) will say I have just received a letter from Jubilee Party, I am satisfied that the standing orders have been complied with, and, therefore, Senator Kang’ata has been removed. This is the new normal.

“None of the senators who spoke supported the removal of Irungu Kang’ata, all others allied to Kieleweke kept quiet and as I told you, they were few. We asked that they provide charges against the senator.

They asked Kang’ata to resign, he refused. We asked they give us the charges facing Kang’ata, they said he wrote a letter against BBI in Mount Kenya region.”

Addressing journalists flanked by the DP allies, the beleaguered Kang’ata maintained that he spoke the truth in his  letter to Uhuru and thanked  Ruto’s allies for standing in solidarity with him.

 “In the worst case scenario that this seat is given to another person I will be gracious, remain a person who respects everyone and I will not insult anyone.

By the very fact that I have been able to lead the Senate, notwithstanding my age, and my parents were hustler mechanics in Murang’a County, I thank God,” he added.

But Senate Majority Leader Samuel Poghisio defended the ouster.

“The action of Jubilee is not strange in politics. We all know that loyalty is a test and the party decides. 

I serve as a servant of the Jubilee coalition Parliamentary Group; I wait to serve along whoever is chosen to serve as Majority Whip,” he said.

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