POLITICALLY CORRECT: What a democrat, what a loss this must be for ODM without Mudavadi!
Posted Friday, April 13 2012 at 18:52
One can only pity the Orange Democratic Movement in the face of the party’s mule-headed resolve to lose the next presidential election.
Given the opportunity to choose a decent, conciliatory and democratic man as its candidate for the presidency, the party has instead chosen to block his ascendancy.
Deputy Prime Minister Musalia Mudavadi is easily the most popular politician in the country, tipped to be the next President of Kenya by repeat opinion polls, the entire political punditry and numerous well-wishers.
With the latest opinion poll showing that he enjoys 5 per cent support across the country, it is clear that for him to become President, he just needs to add a zero to his number, plus one vote, and he would be constitutionally in State House.
For the past four years, Mr Mudavadi has been demanding changes to dictatorial clauses in the party constitution, rules and regulations.
He personally engineered a change of rules so that the party could elect two deputy party leaders in 2008 — himself and Mr William Ruto — to prevent the party from breaking.
Since then, party apparatchiks have been hiding the ODM constitution and rules, while all the time quietly sneaking in surprise clauses about the automatic nomination of its presidential candidate.
Had the party constitution been a public document, Mr Mudavadi would have sought to change the silly rule that hands the party leader the presidential nomination on a silver platter before he began travelling around the country to woo delegates.
It was left until too late in the day before Mr Mudavadi was advised that there was such a rule barring him from offering his talent and abilities to the party in the presidential contest.
Questions must be asked about why no one saw it fit to warn Mr Mudavadi that he was wasting time and energy in wooing delegates for a nomination exercise that did not exist.
This is political fraud of the highest order and a betrayal of the principles of democracy, which ODM claims to uphold.
And just at the moment when the party had agreed to mend its undemocratic ways and change these obnoxious rules, another rabbit has been sprung out of a hat.
It is curious that the Political Parties Act, 2011, requires that a party should notify the Registrar of its intention to change or amend its constitution, its rules and regulations, details of any party official, or its name, symbol, slogan or colour.
That the Registrar shall then, within 14 days, publish a notice of the intended change in The Kenya Gazette. That the political party shall then publish its notification in the daily newspapers, and only make the change after 30 days of receiving public feedback.
This is a very dangerous law because it is both a delaying tactic and a window for the public to interfere with a straightforward matter of allowing competition in the party. Again, why did no one warn Mr Mudavadi about this provision as well?
These are the kind of betrayals that force good people to leave parties.
ODM’s allergy to competition has seen Deputy Party Leader William Ruto first join the United Democratic Movement, and later the United Republican Party.
Fear of ambition has also seen the talented Mr Najib Balala fall out with the party leadership and shop for a political vehicle.