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We’ll give you the best team, NASA says amid anxiety on flagbearer


The National Super Alliance (NASA) will this week announce how its presidential candidate will be picked and has assured supporters of coming up with the best combination to face the Jubilee Party.

After months of anxiety among supporters, NASA insiders say the Opposition alliance will hold its summit this week to agree on how and when the Opposition flagbearer will be picked.

A 12-member team referred to as the National Coordinating Committee (NCC) is expected to present its report to principals at the summit to be held by end of the week.

A team member told The Standard on Sunday, that they will not to pick the presidential candidate but will only advise on the formula, which will have to be ratified by the principals.

Saturday, NASA leaders remained tight-lipped on details of their discussions, saying they had made much progress and asked their supporters to be patient. Its four principals — Raila Odinga, Kalonzo Musyoka, Musalia Mudavadi and Moses Wetang’ula — held a private meeting on Friday in Karen ahead of their rally in Masinde Muliro grounds on Friday.

Conclude report

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Sources said the principals asked the NCC to conclude its report and take the process forward to end the anxiety that has gripped their supporters.

The team had been tasked to draw scenarios on a combination of a wining formula that will ensure the Opposition dislodge Jubilee from power in the August polls.

“We meet regularly and we do not have to tell you when and where we are meeting; when there will be need we will inform you,” Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka said when asked about the upcoming summit.

On Friday, Kalonzo told the alliance’s supporters at the Mathare rally he was not about to quit NASA, following weeks of speculation.

NASA politicians have said the alliance is heading towards making a major announcement.

“There is a lot which has been going on and things are about to climax and that is all I can tell you for sure,” Kakamega Senator Bonny Khalwale said when asked about their talks.

His sentiments were echoed by Kitutu Masaba MP Timothy Bosire who said much ground had been covered.

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“I can assure you that we shall give the country the best team,” he said on telephone from Canada where he is on an official trip.

Bosire added that NASA’s talks are not about focusing on an individual, but revolve around developing a strategy to secure victory.

Other than Bosire and Khalwale, other NCC members include James Orengo, Johnston Muthama, Eseli Simiyu, Sakwa Bunyasi, Francis Nyenze, Agnes Zani, Chris Wamalwa, Farah Maalim and Kipruto Kirwa.

Wamalwa said the alliance had made headway and was prepared to make the final step and pick a candidate.

“We have done 90 per cent of our work and the 10 per cent left involves naming our flag bearer; Kenyans should not fall prey to Jubilee propaganda that we have failed to agree as was confirmed at the Nairobi rally,” Wamalwa said.

Wamalwa noted that after submitting its coalition agreement with the Registrar of Political Parties and nomination rules to IEBC the alliance was moving to the final stage.

“We are no longer an amorphous outfit as we have put provisions for Electoral College, addressed concerns of joint nominations and/or direct nomination.” At the Friday meeting in Karen, sources have told The Standard on Sunday that the four principals resolved to streamline their communication to avoid falling prey to their rivals.

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The team also agreed to prevail upon their allies, particularly members of NCC, to avoid issuing public statements as some of these statements contribute to giving the impression that there is disquiet within the Opposition coalition.

“You have seen NCC members such as Orengo and Nyenze issue proclamations that create tension and anxiety in the coalition. That might not be the case anymore,” an insider told The Standard on Sunday.

The coordinating team will also map out key regions and subsequently, it has zoned the country into three colours — green, red and yellow.

Green represents NASA strongholds, red Jubilee strongholds and yellow (amber) areas considered as battlegrounds. The yellow zones include cosmopolitan areas such as Nairobi, Nakuru and Mombasa.

The team has identified Narok, Kajiado and Northern counties such as Marsabit, Wajir, Garissa, Mandera and West Pokot as amber zones.

NASA believes that it can make forays into West Pokot because local people have mixed feelings about the Jubilee coalition even though the party enjoyed overwhelming support in this region in 2013.

The counties labeled as amber such as Nairobi are areas where support between NASA and Jubilee is divided almost equally. In the last polls, Raila garnered more votes than Uhuru in Narok while Uhuru won in Kajiado. The margin in the two counties was very close.

In Northern Kenya, Raila dominated in Garissa, Wajir and Marsabit while Uhuru had more votes in Mandera. However, clan political and rivalry has resulted in political re-alignments and the Opposition now feels it can get majority votes in the area.

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