Msambweni’s MP-elect pours his heart out, reveals why he ditched Raila party
Msambweni MP-elect Feisal Bader has recounted how he was kicked out of the Orange Democratic Movement party (ODM), forcing him to run for the seat as an Independent candidate.
He at the same time narrated how he met Deputy President William Ruto at his Karen home in Nairobi and assured him of his support.
In an interview with People Daily, Bader (interviewed) recounted how ODM leader Raila Odinga herded several aspirants who had expressed interest to contest the by-election on the party’s ticket and ordered them to step down in favour of Omar Boga, who eventually lost to him.
The closed-door meeting, he said, took place at the Jacaranda Hotel in Diani, Kwale County, just after the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission announced the date for the by-election.
Those present during the meeting, according to Bader, included Boga, Nicholas Zani and Sharlet Akinyi.
“When he instructed us to step down for Boga, I was not amused, however, Raila had maintained that if we insisted on vying on ODM, we would have to go for party nomination with Boga.
At that point, I sensed a scheme to kick us out. I was convinced that the primaries would also not be free and fair,” he said.
It is at that point that he quit the Orange party in a huff and ran as an Independent candidate, with the support of Ruto.
“The DP really supported me whenever I needed him throughout the campaign and up to this moment,” he revealed.
The MP-elect was alluding to remarks by Raila, who put on a brave face despite the by-election debacle, saying Bader was a former ODM member who benefitted from votes from some of the party’s supporters.
“It is the nature of elections, there has to be a victor and a loser,” Raila was quoted saying.
“The winner was actually an ODM member. There are a number of people who voted for him, who are ODM members because of the work he did when he was the assistant to the late Dori,” Raila continued, even as he blamed Boga’s defeat on “blatant voter bribery by some legislators”.
In the Tuesday by-election, Bader clinched the seat by garnering 15,251 votes against Boga’s 10,444.
The late MP’s elder brother, Abbas Dori, also explained how the family settled on Bader to continue with his brother’s legacy.
“My nephew here, Bader, was very close to Suleiman. As a family we thought it prudent for Bader to vie for the seat on an ODM ticket as Dori was an a party member,” Abbas said.
But upon realising that ODM was determined to hand the party ticket to Boga, they resolved that Bader jumps ship and runs as an Independent candidate.
But speaking separately, the ODM brigade in Msambweni maintained the party remains popular in the constituency despite losing the seat. - Additional reporting by KNA