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Monday, April 25, 2022 – The Azimio la Umoja-One Kenya coalition’s presidential candidate, Raila Odinga, has been dealt a blow after IEBC insisted that he has 3 working days to name his running mate ahead of the August polls.

The Independent Election and Boundaries Commission has refused to grant the coalition more time for them to name Raila’s number two.

In a letter to Azimio la Umoja secretariat, IEBC has insisted that the deadline for presenting the names of presidential candidates together with their running mates remains on April 28th.

“The Commission is cognizant of the fact that in the year 2017, the Commission received the names of the Presidential candidates and their Deputies as well as those of County Governors and their Deputies before the date of registration of candidates. The Candidate Registration Management System bears records vindicating this position. Indeed, this presents a solid precedent and it would be unsafe to depart therefrom,

“It is, therefore, our advice that you adhere to the Constitutional, statutory, and regulatory prescriptions,” reads IEBC letter in part.

The response by the Wafula Chebukati-led commission follows a request by the Azimio team who had sort more time to present the name of Raila’s deputy.

While requesting more time, the Azimio la Umoja spokesperson, Makau Mutua, argued that the initial timeline for the submission of names is between May 29th and June 6th, 2022.

“The actual timeline for submission of the names of running mates is between Sunday 29th May 2022 to Monday 6th June 2022 when, as per your previous directives, nomination papers shall be delivered by each candidate to yourself as Chairperson of the Commission,” Mutua said in a letter to IEBC.

The firm stand by IEBC puts the Azimio team in a hard position bearing in mind that they are still experiencing internal rivalry as to who should be named the ODM leader’s deputy.

The Wiper Party has in the recent past insisted that its party leader, Kalonzo Musyoka, be named the presidential running mate as a condition for their support for the coalition.

On the hand, the Mt Kenya faction has also laid claim to the position on the basis that they have more numbers to propel the coalition to victory.

The battle for the position is what informed the Azimio Governing Council to settle on a technical team to help in identifying a suitable running mate for Raila.

With the new directive by IEBC, the Azimio technical team has less than three days to settle on either Kalonzo, Karua, Kenneth, or Munya.

The Kenyan DAILY POST

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