Details have emerged of a phone call President Uhuru Kenyatta made on Friday, January 17, to convince Amani National Congress (ANC) party leader Musalia Mudavadi and his Ford Kenya counterpart Moses Wetangula to attend the BBI forum in kakamega, on Saturday, January 18.
According to sources cited by Daily Nation, the president called Mudavadi in the evening informing him that he needed his support for the BBI report to gain popular support in the Western region.
“Mudavadi explained his misgivings that the meeting had been turned into a decoy for promotion of political interests as opposed to BBI ideals.
“But the President told him he needed his support,” a source identified as a former MP close to Uhuru was quoted.
After Mudavadi was convinced, the ANC leader was reportedly tasked with getting Wetangula on board.
Both Wetangula and Mudavadi had expressed opposition to the Bukhungu stadium BBI meeting painting it as an Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) campaign event.
It was feared in some quarters that if key leaders from the region failed to attend, the BBI would be dismissed as a divisive affair contrary to its agenda of promoting inclusivity.
Uhuru reportedly promised Mudavadi fast action on the matter of the collapsed Mumias Sugar factory noting that he was yet to receive a task-force report. The task-force established seven months ago was co-chaired by Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya and axed Agriculture CS Mwangi Kiunjuri.
“The president assured the ANC party leader that he has since requested for the report and will make necessary policy directives in a rescue plan that will ensure the interests of farmers from the region are catered for,” the unnamed source was quoted as stating.
Sabatia MP Alfred Agoi, a vocal ally of Mudavadi, confirmed reports of the call as he maintained that it was not a surprise due to Uhuru and Mudavadi’s close relationship.