All the National Super Alliance leaders were busy in the city, the day they were expected to be in Mombasa for a retreat.
NASA principals Raila Odinga (ODM), Musalia Mudavadi (Amani), Kalonzo Musyoka (Wiper), and Moses Wetang’ula (Ford Kenya) were expected to meet for three days at the Coast starting to pick the joint presidential candidate for the August 8 elections.
However, the meeting is understood to have failed to take place due to unfinished business.
According to sources, the coalition’s National Coordinating Committee (NCC) met on Monday night to complete its final report.
“We are getting worried as stakeholders. NCC is taking too long to come up with its report, which is to guide the principals in picking one of them to carry the coalition’s flag,” a source told The Standard.
But some sources suggested that there might be no retreat out of town after all. It is understood that the four principals are still haggling about the power-sharing arrangement in the event the alliance forms the next government.
The 12-member committee, co-chaired by James Orengo (ODM), Eseli Simiyu (Ford Kenya), Sakwa Bunyasi (Amani), and Johnstone Muthama (Wiper) is expected to draft a final report and present it to the principals.
NCC is to make its report based on research and recommendations by the five-member technical committee headed by lawyer Dan Ameyo and economist David Ndii.
The technical committee was also working on a power-sharing method among the four parties in relation to Cabinet slots and other public appointments.
Raila, who jetted back into the country on Monday from South Africa, spent some time at his Capitol Hill office before visiting former provincial administrator Andrew Mondoh in hospital.
Raila was in South Africa during the Easter holiday to visit his ailing daughter, Rosemary.
Mr Mudavadi also spent most of the day in his Amani office in Lavington after returning from West Africa on Monday, where he had gone with his family for the Easter holiday.
Kalonzo, who had spent his Easter holiday in Dubai and returned on Monday, said the meeting would take place at a later date that he did not specify.
“We want to assure our supporters that we will soon name a flag-bearer but we are not revealing the details. This is because our competitors, Jubilee, and security organs are using the information to infiltrate our operations,” Kalonzo told The Standard.
The principals have kept their supporters waiting for the naming of the flag-bearer and his running mate to face Jubilee’s President Uhuru Kenyatta in August.
Another reason for the failure of the retreat was said to be the absence of Bomet Governor Isaac Ruto, who was to be welcomed by the four principals into the NASA team yesterday but cancelled the meeting due to party engagements.
“My decision to join NASA is final. But our planned meeting can only take place from Thursday onwards. The reason is I am busy overseeing Chama Cha Mashinani (CCM) nominations today in Bomet and Isiolo,” Ruto said through his spokesman, Vitalis Kimutai.
Ruto is expected to join NASA as a co-principal, bringing the number of parties to the Opposition outfit to five. He will name two members to the NCC and one member to the technical committee.
Agnes Zani, ODM’s secretary-general and a member of the NCC, clarified that it is the prerogative of the four principals to inform their supporters when they will agree among themselves to provide a presidential flag-bearer and running mate.
She explained that NASA is a team and will remain so despite the disagreements over who should be on the ballot to take on Uhuru.
“It is not just about the flag-bearer and the running mate. We hope the principals will retreat and get the flag-bearer. where and when, we don’t know,” said Dr Zani.
But she declined to withdraw her sentiments over the leaked report on the NASA flag-bearer. Zani maintained that the leaked information did not come from the Orange party and wondered why she was being asked to withdraw.
She said NCC had agreed that the report should be handed over to the principals.