Western is an ODM zone and fully supports deputy party leader Wycliffe Oparanya and the secretary general, officials in Busia county have told Ford Kenya leader Moses Wetang’ula.
“You must respect our leader and ODM secretary general Ababu Namwamba if you expect us to respect you. He is our general. He gives us direction,” Wetang’ula was told to his face by Busia ODM vice chairman Thomas Okello. “How do you expect to lead when you insult everyone. You are fighting Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya. You are fighting Bungoma Governor Ken Lusaka. Now you want to start a war with Ababu. You won’t go far this way.”
Okello spoke during a fundraiser at Bulemia Catholic Church on Sunday. Namwamba did not attend but sent his contribution, an indication of discord in the coalition according to insiders. Sources say Ford-K will field an aspirant to challenge Namwamba as Budalang’i MP. It is believed this is why the legislator avoided the fundraiser, which was presided over by Wetang’ula’s.
Okello said Namwamba is presidential material. “Ababu Namwamba is a future president of this country. Handle him with care,” he tp;d Wetang’ula. Area MCA Chris Nakitare said Budalang’i and the entire Busia county firmly support Namwamba and ODM leader Raila Odinga. “Here it is all orange.” Budalang’i constituency manager Godfrey Obayi said Namwamba has always stood by Wetang’ula.
“Our MP stood with you as you fought the Tokyo scam. He stood with you over the alleged election bribery and alleged BAT scandals. He has stood with you even over your recent domestic issues. Respect him,” he said.
Obayi urged Wetang’ula to avoid violence. “We notice you have been accompanied here by two lorries of youth. This is the kind of thing that forms violence. We were not happy to see Ford Kenya youth beating innocent people and destroying ODM merchandise in Kakamega. That is not leadership.”
Wetang’ula said he will go all the way to the presidential ballot. He promised to work with Namwamba and other leaders. But the leaders told him to apologise to Namwamba, Oparanya and the ODM fraternity in Western if he hopes to make any headway. They said if Raila is to hand over the reins in ODM, it would be to the Ababu and [Mombasa Governor Hassan] Joho generation, not to people older than President Uhuru and Deputy President William Ruto.