Farah Maalim, the deputy party leader of Wiper, said the rising competition for slots within the party has made some politicians to fear losing out in primaries, “and they are instead spreading inaccurate information on the party’s position”.
The Wiper Democratic Movement has said that politicians afraid of nominations are the ones fuelling rumours of the party’s possible withdrawal from the National Super Alliance (Nasa).
“Wiper as a party right now is growing in leaps and bounds. It is becoming the hottest property in the country, growing like bush fire,” he said in an interview with the Nation yesterday.
He claimed that some legislators in Wiper were trying to seek direct nomination.
“The people who were in charge of the party, and who come from Ukambani, are beginning to feel insecure. All these things you are seeing right now are borne out of those fears. And what we are telling these friends of ours is that there is no need to panic,” he said.
Mr Maalim, a former Deputy Speaker, was defending his party boss after claims emerged that he could quit Nasa if he fails to clinch the presidential ticket.
But the former Lagdera MP who recently quit ODM said Wiper will instead compete for the presidential ticket.
“The presumption or the fears that Stephen Kalonzo Musyoka, is going to bolt from the Nasa coalition is extremely far-fetched,” he said.
“Those speculations are absolute nonsense. Kalonzo and Wiper right now, you can safely say, are the strongest pillars in Nasa and we will make a case for him to become a compromise candidate,” said Mr Maalim.
Led by Kitui Senator David Musila, a number of legislators, mainly from Kalonzo’s Ukambani backyard, had warned on Monday that it would be ill-advised for him to ditch the opposition alliance.
“If our party leader decides to run for the presidential race on his own outside the opposition umbrella, he will go that route alone,” Mr Musila said.
Nasa brings together Wiper, ODM led by Mr Raila Odinga, Amani National Congress under Musalia Mudavadi and Ford-Kenya’s Moses Wetang’ula.
The debate on who should become its presidential candidate has raged and the alliance says a committee will be charged with determining who will becomes presidential candidate.
In the last elections, Mr Musyoka was Mr Odinga’s running mate under Cord. The coalition which garnered 5,340,546 votes lost to President Uhuru Kenyatta’s Jubilee (6,173,433).
Yesterday, Wiper party said whether Mr Musyoka wins or loses the ticket, it will not affect the party’s support for the opposition movement.
“Whether that (winning the ticket) becomes the case or otherwise, Wiper and Kalonzo are going to remain in Nasa and we expect the coalition to salvage this country and save Kenyans from further maladministration,” Mr Maalim said.