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Tension grips Wiper over Kalonzo's uncertain future in NASA

Wiper is concerned about Kalonzo's future in NASA as well as its involvement in the coalition

Details have emerged of how Wiper Party is keen on having a bigger say in NASA’s post-election, raising fresh questions about the state of the Opposition coalition.

Elected Wiper leaders held a day-long retreat on Thursday at a resort in Athi River in Machakos County where the party resolved to begin ‘a vigorous exercise’ whose agenda is to position Wiper Party leader Kalonzo Musyoka well for the 2022 race.

Speaking to the Standard, Makueni Governor Kivutha Kibwana confirmed that indeed the party was seeking to assert its authority in the NASA movement, in both the short and long term runs.

“We want to play an active role in NASA going forward because we have a huge stake in a stronger NASA. We are looking at this in both short and long term,” Kibwana said.

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Several issues were discussed key among them being the lack of a clear, broad and consultative post-election strategy for NASA. Wiper was concerned that the existing coalition structures which were created for purposes of the 2017 August election were still running the show.

A senior politician who attended the meeting said the party’s position on 2022 — when Kalonzo is expected to be the NASA presidential flagbearer — was made after other ‘serious concerns’ were raised about the manner in which the ODM wing of the Opposition coalition was treating Wiper.

The key concern was the attempt to allot parliamentary leadership positions among NASA affiliates before Parliament broke for the repeat election. ODM’s John Mbadi was allotted the “Minority Leader” position in the 11th Parliament, one which had been previously occupied by Wiper’s Francis Nyenze.

Wiper was thereafter given the two minority Whip positions in the Senate and National Assembly to be occupied by Mutula Kilonzo Jnr and Robert Mbui respectively. The House broke before these matters could be amicably settled and with Parliament reconvening on Tuesday, Wiper is digging for a fight to save its slots.

Wiper’s elected leaders were also said to be apprehensive of the end-game of the new National Resistance Movement fearing it could blur the memorandum of understanding (MoU) in NASA which identifies Kalonzo as the next automatic presidential flagbearer after Raila.

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“We do not want to find ourselves in the position we were in the last season where Kalonzo’s candidature for the top seat was frustrated by ‘a defective MoU’ signed within the former CORD coalition. This time we must get things right,” another Wiper source added.

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