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Is David Musila set to ditch Wiper Party?


Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka (left) and Kitui Senator David Musila during a past meeting. (Photo: Beverlyne Musili/Standard)

Kitui Senator David Musila appears to be on his way out of the Wiper Democratic Movement and could be shopping around for another political party with which he will launch his bid for the governorship in his county.

From his recent remarks, the Senator has long been disgruntled over his treatment at Wiper and has repeatedly made claims that party leader Kalonzo Musyoka is playing favourites by backing Kitui Governor Julius Malombe who wants to defend his seat.

Musila, who was elected senator in 2013, announced his intention to vie for the governorship in his own party, taking on Malombe. However, he says his intention to vie for this more illustrious seat is being resisted by his party, in which he serves as chairman and is a co-founder. 

Addressing a rally at Nuu Market, Musila announced he could vie for the governorship on other parties and not necessarily Wiper.

“This is the year we are going to change Kitui and Ukambani politics completely. I am the Wiper chairman, but from the way things are being handled, I may be forced to advise you to elect whoever you want irrespective of the party. Elect someone whom you think will help you. I will not come here to advise you not to elect non-Wiper candidates,” the senator said.

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Musila’s discomfort within Wiper began to emerge following comments made by Kalonzo during a recent voter mobilisation drive in Kitui County which were interpreted to mean that the Senator should shelve his gubernatorial ambitions.

The senator responded by telling his supporters. “He (Kalonzo) has only a single vote but you have your votes. They should not scare us.” 

Musila also took issue with Dr Malombe’s criticism. The governor has  associated him with hostile MPs from Ukambani, in particular Joe Mutambu (Mwingi Central) and John Munuve (Mwingi North), elected on a Wiper ticket but who have since defected to Jubilee.

Malombe said he was not surprised Musila was thinking of bolting from the party and said the senator was re-enacting a choreographed Jubilee script to scuttle Kalonzo’s chances of becoming the Opposition’s presidential candidate.

“When he says he will be in the ballot irrespective of the party and will advise people to vote in non-Wiper candidates, is he really serious about the welfare and stability of the party?” posed Malombe.

The governor said Musila was living in mortal fear of facing him at the nominations.

“He expected to get a direct Wiper ticket which he was menacingly demanding but after it was declined, he opted to become a spoiler,” said.

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Malombe denied suggestions that Kalonzo was favouring him, noting that the party leader had only requested the two to concentrate their energies not on fighting each other, but discharging their mandate in their respective positions.

Leaders are seeing danger in the conflict between the two politicians. Already Makueni Governor Kivutha Kibwana has offered to reconcile them.  “My opinion is that any politician who campaigns outside the Wiper/Kalonzo equation in Ukambani will be signing their own political obituary,” Prof Kibwana said just weeks after he defected from his Muugano party to join Wiper.

The governor’s race has also attracted Narc leader Charity Ngilu.

With Wiper’s troubles seemingly escalating, Maendeleo Chap Chap Movement has positioned itself to benefit from the anticipated fallout.

“At Chap Chap we are receiving anybody who will add value to us and being a politician of high standing, Musila has the potential of adding value to us,” said Jackson Mwalulu, MCC’s political affairs consultant. But yesterday, 22 Kitui MCAs warned that they will not allow Musila to use his position as Wiper chairman to blackmail Kalonzo into dropping from negotiations on the Opposition’s presidential flag bearer.

Led by Majority Leader Jacob Maundu, the MCAs accused Musila and Kitui’s eight MPs of trying to hold the party leader hostage by making utterances that could rock Wiper and the Opposition ahead of the August 8 elections.

“The recent utterances by Musila in Nuu market that if Kalonzo is keen on his presidential quest, he should keep off Kitui gubernatorial race, are unfortunate,” Maundu said.

The leaders told Musila to swallow his pride and accept that Kalonzo is the Kamba kingpin.

—Additional reporting by Paul Mutua

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