Jubilee set to hold grassroots elections

Deputy President William Ruto has said Jubilee Party will next year hold grassroots elections as part of efforts to strengthening it.

He said the party was on discussions on ways of ensuring that elections were held in March next year as contained in the party’s constitution.

Responding to former cabinet minister Noah Wekesa who had called on the Jubilee top leadership to ensure grassroots elections were held as soon as possible, Dr Ruto assured supporters of the polls.

Speaking during a funeral service for a former Kenya Cooperative Creameries (KCC) director Kibiwott Koross, at his Cherangany farm, Trans Nzoia County, the Deputy President said Jubilee Party elections would be held before March next year.

“I want to assure our supporters that elections will be held before March next year as contained in our party’s constitution,” said Dr Ruto.

He said it is through grassroots elections that members could own the party and not those in big cities alone.

Present were MPs Chris Wamalwa (Kiminini), Oscar Sudi (Kapseret), Caleb Kositany (Soy), Trans Nzoia deputy governor Stanley Kiptarus, former MPs Wesely Korir and Kipruto Kirwa and Zipporah Kittony.

The Deputy President, at the same time, said the ongoing efforts to amend the Constitution must bring on board all key players but not just a few individuals.

He told Kenyans not to be scared by the ongoing debate on calls for a referendum to change the Constitution, noting that that they would have the final say on such a weighty matter.

“All Kenyans are equal before the law and no one has superior views than others on matters pertaining to Constitution making,” said Dr Ruto.

Dr Ruto, however, cautioned some leaders against using the ongoing debate to divide Kenyans on ethnic and political lines.

He said Kenyans should be given the opportunity to make informed decisions and in a sober way when the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) comes out with its recommendations in addition to what the Punguza Mizigo has suggested.

Dr Ruto said Jubilee would continue to focus on the unity and development of the country.

The MPs criticized the move by the government to carry out what he termed as ‘cruel’ Mau evictions, saying the exercise should be suspended.

“As much as we support conservation of water catchment areas, we are not happy about how Mau operations to evict settlers is being carried out. We must have the human face while carrying out the exercise,” said Mr Wamalwa.

He wondered why the operation was being carried out when schools were opening, yet the government registered the learning institutions.

“Why carry out an operation to evict people when schools are opening? We suggest that the eviction exercise should be postponed until candidates sitting for this years’ KCPE have completed,” said Mr Wamalwa.

He said all students in the country irrespective of their status have a right to education as enshrined in the Constitution.

Mr Kositany said the Government should handle issues pertaining to Mau with caution so as not to create a humanitarian crisis.

The leaders eulogized the late Koross as a leader who transformed the lives of local dairy farmers when he was at the helm of leadership at the KCC.