The Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) will in the next two weeks propose for appointment and inclusion in the next Public Accounts Committee the chairperson and at least five new MPs to be members of the powerful watchdog committee after parliament yesterday adopted a report to disband it.
The disbandment of PAC ends a political drama which has heavily dented the image of Budalangi MP Ababu Namwamba. While the report shields him from corruption allegations, it does absolve him, as the committe has recommended further investigations of the matter by EACC.
ODM members in the ill-fated PAC were, apart from Ababu, Ababu Namwamba, Â the ODM Chairman John Mbadi, Junet Mohammed, Ahmed Abbas, Edick Omondi Anyanga, AliceÂ Nyanchoka, Manson Nyamweya, Charles Geni and Silvance Osele.
Other members of the opposition, or who allied with the opposition in the committee, includedÂ Jessica Mbalu (Wiper), Sakwa Bunyasi (UDF) and Katatha Maweu (Independent).
Yesterday, Parliament adopted the Report on Powers and Privileges Committee which indicted five members of the committee and recommended their expulsion not only from the PAC committee but also any other House Committee for the remainder of the term of the 11th parliament.
These five included Chairman Ababu, Vice Chair Cecily Mbarire (Runyenjes TNA), MPs Abbas, Omondi Anyanga and James Bett of URP.
Should ODM decide to retain the other MPs in the committee not tainted with the allegations, it will have to pick three new members to join the committee and also determine who becomes the committee’s chairperson.
Potential contenders for the committee’s chairperson are John Mbadi, who, though a member of the committee, was not tainted with the corruption allegations.Â The other members of the committee and potential chairpersons are Suna East MP Junet Mohamed and South Mugirango’s Manson Nyamweya, both who were also untainted.
It will be a long shot for Silvanus Osele, Charles Geni and Alice Chae.
If ODM maintains the argument that the seat belonged to western Kenya, by virtue of having been held by the disgraced Budalangi MP Ababu Namwamba, then the party will have to cast its net on a loyal Luhya MP to take over, say Funyula’s Paul Otuoma.
On the strength of parliamentary proceedings, the other possible outsider the party can pick on is Rarieda MP Eng. Nicholas Gumbo, or Ruaraka MP T.J Kajwang’.
The reorganization of PAC, to a larger extent, will also be seen as a reorganization of ODM as Party Leader Raila Odinga set in motion a new team to help tackle corruption in the country. While it had been hoped that Ababu Namwamba will be the face of ‘zero tolerance’ to corruption, and chicken eating, it appears the dream was lofty for the erudite and well-polished lawmaker.
In the new PAC, Odinga is said to be keen on presenting a new ODM parliamentary leader with the courage, stamina and political strength to re-brand not only PAC, but also his party, as critical anti-corruption institutions.
All the five disgraced MPs are expected to apologize today in the most humiliating manner. Also expected to apologize is Samuel Arama, a rebel ODM MP who claimed he overheard that money exchanged hands.