The Star (Nairobi)

Kenya: Elders Want a Kikuyu, Luhya Alliance Ahead of Elections

KIKUYU elders are seeking to meet their Luhya counterparts to hammer out an alliance between Deputy Prime Minister Musalia Mudavadi's UDF and Uhur Kenyatta's TNA ahead of the next general election.

Officials of the Kikuyu Council of Elders' led by chairman General Muiruri told a UDF rally in Kakamega at the weekend that they want Mudavadi to provide elders from the Luhya community for a meeting soon. "Our youth have talked and agreed. We need to meet and talk as elders to endorse their decisions. Let us not expose all now until elders sit and talk before making their decision known," Muiruri said.

The elders said they attended the rally just to see if Luhyas have accepted UDF party and ask Mudavadi to give them the elders for engagement. Mudavadi promised to provide elders in one week. Elder Gichuru said Central province is ready to work with the Luhya community though Mudavadi and UDF. "The game plan is to galvanise the Kisii, Kuria and Luhya communities in Western Kenya to team up with the Kikuyu community," he said.

The presence of Nairobi Metropolitan minister Jamlek Kamau and Local Government assistant minister Lewis Nguyai allied to Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta's TNA party and Mt Elgon MP Fred Kapondi, an ally of Eldoret North MP William Ruto at the meeting signaled an alliance in the offing. Kapondi said the alliance talks began on Wednesday night when MPs allied to URP and UDF met on Thursday. "We shall move together in this journey," he said.

Kamau said the next general election will be a contest between the young and old generations. "If it is a two horse race, then one horse will be carrying old people aged 60 and above and another carrying young generation," he said. Nguyai said that Central, Western and Rift Valley will work together to ensure a straight win in the first round. He said the two principals in the coalition government should retire.

Ndaragwa MP Jeremiah Kioni said organising people in tribal blocks is retrogressive and a threat to peace. He advised Kenyans to think as Kenyans and not as tribes. Present were Housing minister Soita Shitanda, assistant ministers Manyala Keya, George Khaniri, Nderitu Muriithi, MPs Abdikadir Mohammed, Yusuf Chanzu, Boni Khalwale, George Nyamweya, Justus Kizito and Ben Washiali.

Khalwale said the contest between Mudavadi and Prime Minister Raila Odinga is not a war between the Luhya and Luo communities. Former Trade minister Mukhisa Kituyi, former nominated MP mark Too and a host of councilors and UDF aspirants attended the meeting. Mudavadi said his campaigns will be anchored on empowerment of the poor and expansion of education facilities to ensure compliance with the constitutional requirements of access to education by all.

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