The ruling Jubilee Party plans to change its branding to cut ties with Vice President William Ruto’s wing and set the stage for coalition negotiations with the opposition ODM.
The renaming plan as well as the conditions for unitary talks with the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) will be presented starting today (Monday) at a meeting of the party’s highest government body.
Jubilee Secretary General Raphael Tuju told the nation in an interview that the party’s National Management Committee (NMC) would meet on Monday and Tuesday to discuss its technical team’s report on the proposed political alliance.
The meeting, Mr Tuju said, follows another on Friday where NMC members and the party’s parliamentary leadership met the technical team to discuss details of the proposed union with ODM.
Anniversary Deputy General Secretary Joshua Kuttuny said the party will also be discussing a new look that optimizes colors, symbols and logos.
Broken political ranks
He said the ruling party’s current colors are derived from President Uhuru Kenyatta’s National Alliance (TNA) and DP Ruto’s United Republic Party (URP), which have since been politically broken.
The vice president has been an active advocate of the United Democratic Alliance (UDA), which requires Jubilee to be renamed before a coalition agreement with ODM.
The colors of the anniversary party are red, yellow, black and white.
Red was the eye-catching color of the TNA logo before it merged with URP, whose dominant colors were yellow and black.
Grasp the present realities
Mr. Kutuny, a former political adviser to the president, said the new logo and colors would reflect current realities.
The technical team that worked on the details of the coalition agreement, which met with the leadership of the NMC and House of Representatives on Friday, included party lawyers and three directors, Tuju said.
“On all coalition issues, I can only speak after NMC authorizes me, and therefore any statement I make can only come from NMC or the party leader as I am not expressing my opinion,” Tuju told the nation. This suggests that the discussions have been approved by the top party leadership.
“I have received a draft of the official statement and am awaiting approval from NMC before I issue it,” he said of the discussions on Friday.
Anniversary year vice chairman David Murathe said in a separate interview that coalition issues were being discussed at “very high levels with a view to making an impressive machine for 2022”.
“We have agreed to reorganize a stronger anniversary by entering into an alliance.”
“Now that we have got rid of the UDA, our next phase is to strengthen the party and its structures and offices and hold elections all the way to an NDC that decides whether we have a candidate as a party or produce.” a coalition candidate, “Murathe told the nation Sunday.
He said the anniversary is now clear with his roadmap through 2022.
“We need space to renew our party and structures and to make us an impressive machine for the next elections,” he said.
He pointed out that after the UDA sympathizers associated with Ruto have been kicked out of the anniversary, the next phase is “to drive them out of Mt. Kenya and introduce our new partners.”
“Mount Kenya is one of our strongholds and we come to a point where we introduce our partners there,” said the Deputy Chairman of Jubilee.
He said the focus of the anniversary is on the post-Uhuru presidency.
“We agreed that as we set the path to 2022, we would uphold Uhuru’s vision of trying to unite all the leaders who support the handshake into one.
“We turn to One Kenya Alliance and ODM and other like-minded parties and hope to have two large formations – one led by the so-called Hustler movement and the other for peace, stability and a united country.”
Mr Murathe noted that they are concerned about their partners belonging to other coalitions that he believes need to be disbanded before a “massive machine is updated in 2022”.
“We are not forming a coalition government, we are looking at a futuristic arrangement that is aware of the fact that you cannot now be in a coalition with partners who are already in other coalitions.
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“It must also be clear that the agreement we are working on does not push for the dissolution of one party, but for a party in which each party retains its identity, but under the umbrella of the coalition,” said Murathe.
A standard bearer
He indicated that they would then gather behind a standard bearer.
ODM is optimistic about the coalition with Jubilee, but wants to implement the plan next year so as not to fall into a legal quagmire.
As a member of the NASA coalition, ODM cannot sign another coalition agreement before withdrawing from NASA.
Withdrawing now to conclude a new deal with Jubilee would mean the party’s transition to the majority side, with the consequences of losing its minority positions in the Senate and National Assembly.
The formal coalition agreement is therefore likely to be postponed until it is legally safe to put the pen on paper under electoral law.