, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 27 – The National Governing Council (NGC) of the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) on Friday resolved to adopt changes to their constitution removing a clause giving the Party Leader the automatic party nomination for the presidency.
The clause which was the main reason that former Deputy Party Leader Musalia Mudavadi left the party not only opens the race in ODM’s nominations but also fulfils a pledge made by the party after it was registered.
The NGC which was held at the Bomas of Kenya also resolved to change the party’s slogan form “chungwa moja maisha bora” to Chungwa maisha Bora.
The move to change the slogan was informed by change of name by ODM Kenya to the Wiper Democratic Movement.
The meeting which lasted slightly over five hours also resolved to convert the National Delegates Conference (NDC) to an electoral college with the mandate to nominate the party’s presidential candidate.
“In the event that any one candidate presents himself or herself for nomination, the National Elections Board (NEB) will present the candidate to the NDC for endorsement,” read Secretary Anya’ng Nyong’o.
The meeting whose main agenda was to ratify changes made to the party’s Elections and Nominations Rules also adopted that either the electoral college of delegates or universal suffrage will be used in the nomination of candidates for county representatives, MP, Senator, Governor and women representative.
The power to decide on the method to be used in the nomination of the above named candidates was vested in the National Executive Committee.
ODM also resolved to mandate its NEC to appoint five-member County Elections Coordinating Panels which will oversee the nominations in counties and set three-week timelines for resolution of election disputes.
Party leader Prime Minister Raila Odinga who was present during the deliberations insisted that the party remained the only one committed to reforms
“Nigerians says that a man who keeps looking in one direction for so long will soon develop a stiff neck. We refuse to be that man we will be failing the country if we don’t face the reality now upon us. We must stand up and fight for the values we believe in that are good for Kenya,” said Odinga.
“We are changing our rules to accommodate competing views so as to ensure that there is not only a level playing field but that the party offers candidates who are in tune with the aspirations of the people,” added Odinga.
Odinga who is facing stiff competition in the race for the presidency maintained that ODM will not gang up against any individual but for the prosperity of the nation.
“As a party we must see the changes that give our opponents sleepless nights, the changes that have given birth to marriages of convenience are replete with opportunities.”
ODM which has declared that it has no option other than winning the next general election has also set up 22 campaign teams dubbed ‘ODM mashinani’(grassroots) to vigorously campaign and popularize the party.
The meeting was attended by the 47 ODM County Chairpersons, the ODM Parliamentary Group, the National Executive Committee members and members of all the Standing Committees.