Wiper Party leader Kalonzo Musyoka has defended his decision to pull out from the Senate speaker’s race stating the decision was made after holding a late-night meeting with Senators allied to the Azimio La Umoja coalition.
The decision was also ratified by President Uhuru Kenyatta and Azimio flagbearer, Raila Odinga on Wednesday, September 7, a day prior to the elections held in Senate chambers on Thursday, Wednesday 8.
Kalonzo detailed that Uhuru and Raila agreed to his withdrawal after Azimio learnt that the race would be affected by election malpractices. The meeting with Senators was held at his Karen Command Centre.
“The decision was not impromptu. I was well guided by my party and the Azimio top leadership after we realised the process had been marred with bribery. We decided that we needed to keep it clean and in that case, step out of the race,” he stated in an interview with the Standard.
He further dispelled reports that it was his own last-minute decision to pull out of the race for fear of being floored by Amason Kingi who was fronted by Kenya Kwanza led by President-elect William Ruto.
Kalonzo also further indicated that he had no plans of swearing his allegiance to Ruto by ditching Azimio la Umoja.
“I have not had any consultation with Ruto and Kenya Kwanza. Those are frivolous allegations. I am taking a strategic retreat so that I can plan my political future which is still bright,” he added.
In the senate speaker race, former Kilifi governor, Amason Kingi, was elected speaker with Meru senator Kathuri Murungi as his deputy.
At the National Assembly, Azimio’s Kenneth Marende lost to former Bungoma senator, Moses Masika Wetangula.
“I promise to see to it that you are able to effectively discharge your Constitutional mandate and I will unequivocally submit myself to the collective will of this House and reiterate my singular desire to serve with impartiality, fidelity to the Constitution and the laws of this land,” Wetangula stated in his maiden speech.
Wiper deputy party leader Farah Maalim was also defeated in the National Assembly deputy speaker’s election to Uasin Gishu women representative Gladys Shoilei.
While lauding the elected speakers, Presdient-elect William Ruto urged them to uphold the rule of law and execute their duties dilligently.