Despite stating that the meeting was postponed to a later date to pave way for the country’s second president Daniel Moi’s burial, a report published by The Daily Nation on Saturday, February 15, detailed that the party members were divided over President Uhuru Kenyatta’s absence.
The Kieleweke faction, aligned to Kenyatta was worried that in his absence, Deputy President William Ruto would chair the meeting.
The leaders argued that decisions made at the meeting would be lopsided.
“As the nation continues to prepare to bid farewell to the departed second president of the Republic of Kenya, the late H.E Daniel Moi, our party also joins Kenyans in solidarity to pay our respects,” the statement read.
“Under the prevailing circumstances, may I notify Jubilee Party members of Parliament that the consultative meeting, scheduled for Friday, February 14, has been postponed to a later date to be announced,” Tuju’s statement read.
Reports argue that the meeting’s agenda had not been circulated, as an original newsletter dated Thursday, February 7 had stated that the leaders would be having a consultative meeting.
Tuju had clarified that the forum would not be considered a Parliamentary Group (PG) meeting, because it will not be chaired by Kenyatta, the party leader.
If the meeting had taken place on Valentine’s Day, it would have been the first meeting since Kenyatta’s re-election in 2017, in a party marred with disputes and a shaken relationship between Kenyatta and Ruto.
It would also be the first meeting ahead of the party’s much-anticipated March 2020 elections.’
Kenyatta is the party leader. Let us await his direction. I cannot comment further on the matter. I’m waiting for the President’s signal,” Murang’a Senator Irungu Kang’ata.
Jubilee Nominated MP Maina Kamanda, a staunch Kenyatta ally asserted that the agenda of the meeting must include change of parliamentary system.
“You have seen the likes of Senate Majority leader Kipchumba Murkomen use their positions to speak against Kenyatta. If a meeting is not called by the President, I will not be a party to it. And the agenda must include how to remove the likes of Murkomen,” Kamanda argued.
Ruto’s ally led Kipkelion West MP Hillary Koskei, distanced themselves from the reports arguing that they were focused on celebrating Moi.
Speculations are rife on whether Tuju’s will be able to summon the MPs any time soon, as he is recuperating in Karen Hospital after being involved in a road accident on Wednesday morning, February 12
A memo released by Jubilee on.. was not signed as Tuju, the secretary-general is mandated to issue press releases from the party.
On Thursday, February 14, Ruto’s ally, blogger Dennis Itumbi, raised concern on Tuju’s availability, asserting that though he was not a Jubilee member, the party had to continue running its day to day activities.
“To assist Jubilee Party to continue without interruptions and representation of the party in Cabinet, “on a need basis”, it is natural that the deputy secretary-general Caleb Kositany, will be in-charge or so I think. But, I am not a party member, so I leave it there. Get well Tuju,” Itumbi tweeted.
Kositany, Soy MP is DP Ruto’s ally.