- Supposed ODM party rebel lawmakers called on President William Ruto at State House, Nairobi
- This was days after the political outfit under Raila Odinga deemed them to have given up their loyalty following their resolve to rally behind Ruto and his regime
- The group comprises Lang’ata MP Phelix Odiwuor, Gem’s Elisha Ochieng’ Odhiambo, Suba South’s Caroli Omondi, Gideon Ochanda of Bondo, and Kisumu senator Tom Ojienda
Nairobi – The group of lawmakers excommunicated by the ODM party for associating with the government has visited President William Ruto at state house.
The lawmakers deemed errant by the party were expelled after the resolution was adopted by the National Executive Committee (NEC), stewarded by the political outfit’s leader, Raila Odinga and chaired by nominated MP John Mbadi.
They are Lang’ata’s Phelix Odiwuor alias Jalang’o, Gem’s MP Elisha Ochieng’ Odhiambo, Suba South’s Caroli Omondi, Gideon Ochanda of Bondo, and Kisumu senator Tom Ojienda.
The lawmakers had in July appeared before a disciplinary committee before the decision to send them away.
Ruto hosts ODM rebel MPS
Before their Wednesday meeting, the president counselled the lawmakers to be steadfast in the face of ‘maltreatment’ by their party.
In a brief engagement with the MPs on Monday, September 11, the president asked them not to worry about the events, saying he also had run-ins with ODM’s disciplinary committee during his days in the party.
“I was the deputy party leader of ODM and was actually handed the same letter. Whenever you receive such letters from ODM, just know that things are now starting to align for you. So Elisha, do not worry. The only way to succeed in politics is by getting a letter from ODM,” he said.
He recalled ODM taking him to court with the case running for five years.
“They wanted to throw me out of the party. We were in court for five years, then I became deputy president. You will come so that I can tell you how we can plan this,” added Ruto.
By openly pledging allegiance to President William Ruto, the lawmakers were deemed to have given up their loyalty.
“They faced allegations of violating the party constitution and section 14A of the Political Parties Act 2011 by openly associating with and supporting activities of a rival political party and opposed lawful decisions/resolutions made by the party organs.
The NEC decided that these members be deemed to have resigned from the party. The party is hereby directed to commence the process of removing them from the register of the party,” partly read a statement from ODM.
However, in their defence, the lawmakers explained their association with the government was purely for development purposes and were not ready to shun working with Ruto’s administration.
ODM’s decision to expel them was rendered null and void after the Political Parties Disputes Tribunal issued an injunction against the move.