- William Ruto
Azimio leader Raila Odinga has suffered a huge blow after one of his principals Ali Roba, of the United Democratic Movement (UDM) party, joined the Kenya Kwanza alliance on Thursday, August 18.
Sources privy to the matter confirmed to Kenyans.co.ke that Roba led a delegation of UDM politicians who were elected under his party to join the coalition under president-elect, William Ruto.
The outgoing Mandera governor and his contingent were welcomed by the Ruto at his official residence in Karen.President-elect William Ruto receives UDM politicians who defected to the Kenya Kwanza alliance on Thursday, August 18, at his Karen residence.William Ruto
"We salute the United Democratic Movement (UDM) leadership for abandoning Azimio La Umoja and joining Kenya Kwanza," the president-elect stated.
UDM, clinched a total of 45 seats in the just-concluded General election. Among them are Mandera governor-elect Mohamed Adan and Wajir's Khalif Mohamud Ali.
Roba won the Mandera County senatorial seat on the party ticket while Abass Sheikh Mohammed bagged the seat in Wajir County under the same party.
The party won a total of seven Parliamentary seats and 34 Member of County Assembly (MCA) seats across the country.
The new defections could hand the Kenya Kwanza coalition the much-needed numbers in the National Assembly to push its legislative agenda.
Initially, Ruto's camp had 159 against Azimio's 162 members.
With the seven UDM MPs, GDDP'S Caleb Mule (Kangundo) and the 10 independent candidates joining Ruto's camp on Wednesday, August 17, the alliance's representation now sums up to 180 in the national assembly. This accounts for more than half of the 337 seats available.
Kenya Kwanza's new majority will see it get the lion's share of the 12 nominated MP seats. In 2017, the ruling party, Jubilee, was allocated six of the slots.
Further, 22 governors were elected under the Ruto-led coalition against Azimio's 21, with Kakamega and Mombasa elections yet to take place after they were postponed indefinitely.
In the Senate, Kenya Kwanza also has a slim majority after it bagged 24 seats while Azimio garnered 23 seats.
The numbers each coalition has will determine how the ruling government will transact and control the 13th Parliament.
For instance, in the National Assembly, the party with the majority numbers will have an upper hand in pushing its legislative agenda.Raila Odinga walking out from KICC flanked by other Azimio One Kenya Coalition leaders after addressing the Media on August 16, 2022Kenyans.co.ke
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