, TAITA TAVETA, Jan 17 – The Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for local Government Musalia Mudavadi has assured Kenyans that Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party will ensure locals benefits from national assets and resources found in the counties across the country.
He said the party fully supports legislation aimed at safeguarding County residents interests in such assets so that the gains of devolution as enshrined in the Constitution are realized in line with aspirations of Kenyans who overwhelmingly voted for it.
“The ODM party will support the Amendments Bill to Mining Act fronted by Hon Thomas Mwadegu, Kenya Wildlife Service Act and any other Acts aimed at protecting and ensuring locals benefits from natural resources and national assets found in a County,” he said.
Mudavadi said ODM is consulting effectively in and outside Parliament with relevant stakeholders so that all key laws related to devolution are passed with minimal objection to consolidate the gains of devolution according to wishes of Kenyans.
He noted the party has identified fundamental issues of land, national assets and resources among others that relate to Coast people and commit to offer solutions by making sure genuine and full implementation of devolution which has been the wish of the coastal people since independence.
He said ODM will vigorously resist any attempts aimed at watering down any aspects of devolution to deny Kenyans power to manage their affairs noting the party advocates and uphold devolution in its manifesto as a pillar in the quest to govern the country.
The DPM was speaking on Monday during Taita-Taveta County ODM delegates meeting in Voi town to drum up support for his presidential nomination bid and party popularization campaign ahead of 2012 general elections.
“I am presenting my candidature for our party’s presidential nomination. The ultimate decision rests with you as delegates whether to give me the mandate to carry the flag. I am prepared to respect your verdict. As party leaders we cannot subject aspirants for Senators, Governors, MPs and County Reps to vigorous nominations process but exempt the presidential nominee,” he said.
Mudavadi urged the residents to remain steadfast in ODM which is the only national party with supporters across the country and ignore mushrooming individualistic parties that have no chance to govern this country.
He cautioned the locals to be careful with regional parties being launched by some leaders to serve their egos and aim to weaken national parties such as ODM but lacks vision and agendas for Kenyans.
The DPM was accompanied by Dan Mwazo, Assistant Minister for Livestock Development, MP Voi and ODM County chairman, Calistus Mwatela, Assistant Minister for Education, MP Mwatate and Thomas Mwadegu, MP Wundanyi who called on the delegates to support his bid saying he has the credentials and experience to be the party’s flag bearer.
They urged the party to support Coast leaders resolve to address issues that affect the local community saying ODM remains the preferred political party of the Coast people arising out of what its manifesto promises.
“Our opponents are forming regional parties to weaken national parties like ODM. However our people remain loyal to ODM and request the party to support local leaders in their bid to address issues that affect residents and watch out for any effort to deny Kenyans devolution,” Mwazo said.