By Felix Olick for the Star
CORD co-principal Kalonzo Musyoka has said a flat No to President Uhuru Kenyatta’s overtures to abandon the opposition in a move that could see his Wiper Party control the legislature.
In a strategy to buttress his 2017 re-election bid, Uhuru reached out to Kalonzo to replace National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi, who survived a tough censure motion just last month.
Part of the deal was also to allow Kalonzo to nominate the powerful National Assembly Leader of Majority, which means the incumbent, Aden Duale, could well have been axed.
Kalonzo, a former Vice President, would also have had some of his allies nominated to Cabinet, particularly to replace suspended Lands Secretary Charity Ngilu.
In what is increasingly being seen as a strategy to find alternatives for Deputy President William Ruto, Uhuru is reaching out to various regional kingpins and has already appointed New Ford Kenya leader Eugene Wamalwa to Cabinet.
In his latest appointments, Uhuru gave key jobs to people from Kalonzo’s ethnic turf, including Nzioka Waita as Secretary of Delivery and Monica Juma as Secretary to the Cabinet.
However, multiple sources told the Star that Kalonzo and Machakos Senator Johnstone Muthama insisted there is no way they could join Jubilee.
â€œMuthama is standing at the door with a rungu. He has insisted that Kambas will not walk out of the Cord house,â€ an MP familiar with the behind-the- scene intrigues told the Star.
There is also a feeling in Wiper circles that Uhuru’s move is coming too late, with the 2017 polls in sight.
The plan was to have Muturi become Attorney General, while current AG Githu Muigai prepared to succeed Chief Justice Willy Mutunga.
On Monday, the Star reported that close allies of Kalonzo have been meeting Uhuru to finesse the plan and persuade the Wiper leader to accept the deal.
However, the leaders, who include Wiper chairman David Musila, former Cabinet minister Gideon Ndambuki and Wiper National Elections Board chair Sammy Mbova, dismissed the alleged deal as mere speculation.
Yesterday, Musila, who is also the Kitui Senator, maintained Kalonzo is “not interested in a government job”.
“We visited State House last week on Wednesday among MPs from all parties as a parliamentary prayer group,” Musila explained.
Speaking to the Star, Muthama, a key ally of Kalonzoâ€™s and a vocal critic of the Jubilee administration, vowed that Wiper will not back Uhuru.
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