DP Ruto allies speak out on UDA ownership battle, blame Jubilee party

I can only read Jubilee Party's hand in it - Johnstone Muthama

United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party officials led by Chairman Johnstone Muthama

United Democratic Alliance (UDA) chairman Johnstone Muthama has accused the Jubilee party of the ongoing battle for the party's ownership.

The accusation sprouted following a new petition filed with the Political Parties Tribunal by the party's former chairman, Mohamed Abdi Noor.

Noor, a former nominated Member of Parliament (MP), claims that the former Machakos Senator, UDA party Secretary-General Veronica Maina and former Kakamega Senator Boni Khalwale have taken over leadership of the party without adhering to the provisions of the party's constitution.

"The case launched by Hon. Abdi Noor at Political Parties Disputes Tribunal on UDA ownership is malicious and I can only read JP hand in it.

"Gazettement of changes to the UDA’s National Executive Council (NEC) officials through Gazette Notice No. 1233 dated January 29, 2021 and published on March 19, 2021 was within the law. All other theories in papers today are Jubilee Party gimmicks," Mr Muthama stated.

On his part, Noor claims that the Gazette Notice quoted by the former Machakos Senator was illegally issued.

"I am aware on my own knowledge that the Registrar of Political Parties unlawfully made changes to the party’s National Executive Council (NEC) officials through Gazette Notice No. 1233 dated January 29, 2021, and 2739 published on March 19, 2021.

"The Registrar deliberately ignored complaints and reservations leading to the change of officials," a sworn affidavit read in part.

Jubilee-UDA rocky marriage

In a recent statement, the Jubilee party had declared intention to cut ties with the UDA party before the expiry of the post-election pact made after Jubilee clenched the presidency in 2017.

Jubilee Party Secretary-General Raphael Tuju wrote to the Political Parties Registrar on its intention to dissolve the 2018 partial coalition pact with UDA, which was then Party of Development and Reforms (PDR).

"The Jubilee Party National Management Committee, after considering the prevailing political and legal hurdles facing the proposed coalition, have found it improper and untenable to complete the formulation of the Coalition," the letter read in part.

Ms Maina, however, in a statement to the press announced that UDA had raised a "dispute" on the matter.

"The relevant organs of the Coalition parties shall undertake the appropriate arbitration process in a bid to resolve the dispute and update you of the outcome thereof.

"Meantime, all parliamentarians holding office pursuant to the coalition agreement and in particular, the deputy majority leader Senator Fatuma Dullo should continue holding office until such a time as the disputes arbitration panel shall determine the fate of the coalition," the SG's statement read in part.

Ms Maina would later also clarify that the party does not belong to Mr Muthama after Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria wrongfully claimed so.

"We wish to state categorically that UDA is neither Johnstone Muthama's party nor is it managed by sitting MPs. On the contrary, UDA is the Hustler's party.

"It is also important to point out that it is not true that the People's Democratic Party (PDP) belongs to Omingo Magara. In fact, in the spirit of Hustler Nation, he has left the PDP party and joined UDA. In the same vein, Mwangi Kiunjuri of the Service Party has been consulting with UDA on a united approach in the fielding of candidates and other Hustler Nation activities," the statement read in part.

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