NAIROBI, Kenya, Sept 9 – As the curtains opened to usher in Jubilee’s 12 united constituent parties at the Kasarani National Stadium Friday, it was an even bigger celebration as the party welcomed at least 40 defectors from rival parties.
The news was broken by Majority Leader Aden Duale who listed the number of Members of Parliament who had defected to the Jubilee Party.
“I want to say clearly. All these MPs and others who will come tomorrow have come from ODM, PNU, Wiper… they have decided to voluntarily join JP. You either belong to a national party or a tribal party,” he told the delegates during the JP convention held to adopt the party’s Constitution at a meeting presided over by Deputy President William Ruto.
Some of those who have defected from the rival Orange Democratic Movement included Tigania East MP Mpuri Aburi, Mathare MP Stephen Kariuki, Laisamis MP Joseph Lekuton, Lunga Lunga MP Khatib Mwashetani, Kilifi South MP Mustafa Idd and Kilifi North MP Gideon Mung’aro.
“I am Raila’s younger brother and I have told him I have gone to join the government and then he told me I have become naughty,” Aburi said to the laugher of the delegates who had filled the arena of the Kasarani National Stadium.
Deputy President William Ruto said the party would receive even more defectors during its grand launch on Saturday.
The convention presided over by Ruto celebrated Jubilee’s achievements in empowering women and youth, development of infrastructure, job creation and among others boosting the country’s health and agricultural sectors.
John Kiarie, who has been an ODM stalwart, also announced that he would be vying for an elective seat on a JP ticket.
The convention turned out to be a colorful and cheerful event despite early morning hurdles that had almost stalled the event.
Delegates converged outside the arena hall demanding Sh9,000 in allowances promised to them.
It was impossible for the speakers to address them as they shouted on top of their voices demanding for the allowances ignoring calls from nominated MP Johnson Sakaja and Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipchuma Murkomen who kept on begging them to wait until when the event ends.
It took the intervention of Ruto for the delegates to calm down after he promised them that they would get their allowances after Friday’s event.