Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi has told Deputy President William Ruto to resign and join the opposition if he’s irked by the appointment of ODM MPs to head key parliamentary committees.
Hon Wandayi, who is also the ODM Secretary for Political Affairs, through a tweet on his twitter handle further advised Ruto that Prime Minister Raila Odinga (Tinga) had resigned as MP and sought a fresh mandate from the electorate when he fell out with his party leadership. He urged Ruto to do the same.
The statement from Hon Wandayi comes in the backdrop of calls by the DP’s allies led by Kapsiret MP Caleb Kositany and Nandi Senator Simon Cherargei urging ODM MP’s who recently got appointed to key committees to relinquish the seats or officially defect to the government side.
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They argue that under parliamentary tradition the leadership of key committees is a preserve of the opposition and further that since ODM is in a cooperation deal with Jubilee, it would be impossible for the said MPs to effectively play their oversight role.
In response to this argument by the DP and his allies, ODM MPs led by the Party Chairman Hon John Mbadi who is also the National Assembly Minority Leader have maintained their position that there’s no Standing Order barring them from assuming committee leadership roles.
They claim that it is committee members who elect the committee leadership which may come from any side of the House regardless of party affiliation.
What’s ironical in the argument from the DP’s side is that when they were in a good working relationship with the President’s side they controlled House Committee leadership in total disregard to what they now term as parliamentary tradition thereby placing ODM and its coalition partners at a disadvantage.
ODM MP’s picked to head key committees include Hon Wandayi who has retained his position as head of the Parliamentary Accounts Committee, Mvita MP Hon Abdulswamad Shariff Nassir who retains Chairmanship of the Public Investments Committee, Homa Bay Women Representative Hon Gladys Wanga who now chairs the Planning and Finance Committee and Busia Women Representative Hon Florence Mutua who will chair the Education Committee.
By Antony Oyugi