Expelled ODM MPs defiant, vow to continue working

Written by on 8 September 2023

The five MPs expelled from the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) yesterday remained defiant over the move with some of them threatening to appeal the said decision in the Political Parties Dispute Tribunal. Speaking separately, the MPs said that the decision of the party will not interfere with their mandate as they vowed to continue serving their constituents.

The ODM’s National Executive Council on Monday resolved to expel Tom Ojienda (Kisumu Senator), Felix Odiwour (Langata MP), Caroli Omondi (Suba South MP), Gideon Ochanda (Bondo MP), and Elisha Odhiambo (Gem MP) over gross misconduct. The five expelled MPs are among eight opposition lawmakers who have been selling the Kenya Kwanza agenda despite Azimio’s stand that they do not recognise Ruto as President.

The others include Nairobi Woman Representative Esther Passaris, who was directed to pay a fine of Sh250,000 to the party, Paul Abuor (Rongo) and Mark Nyamita (Uriri)who were reprimanded and fined Sh1 million each to be paid within sixty days. The party accused the members of violating Article 11(1) (e) of 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 opposing lawful decisions/resolutions made by the party organs.

“The NEC has resolved to expel Hon Elisha Odhiambo (Gem), Sen Tom Ojienda (Kisumu), Hon Gideon Ochanda (Bondo), Hon Felix Odiwuor (Langata), and Hon Caroli Omondi (Suba South) for defying party position and gross misconduct. The party is hereby directed to commence the process of removing them from the register of the party,” ODM said in a statement.

But yesterday Ojienda, Omondi, Odiwuor and Ochanda said that they are not shaken and are still serving their constituents. Ojienda who was the first to speak on the matter said that he does not regret aligning with the government of the day, and will continue to do so despite being kicked out by the opposition party on whose ticket he clinched the Senate seat.

“My party has today expelled me for working with President William Ruto. I have no apology and will continue to work with the President,” Ojienda wrote on social networking site X, formerly twitter.

Singled out

Speaking in a local vernacular radio station, Ojienda wondered why the Party singled them out while several of elected leaders in the party including Party Leader are meeting with the President. According to him, it was discriminatory to single them out when many MPs, Governors elected on Azimio ticket have even close dalliance with the government of the day. He defended his close links with President Ruto’s administration insisting that is the only way to win development for the region.

“We don’t have an apology for working with the President because we are working with the government for the sake of development in the region,” he said. Immediately after he was done, his law firm, Prof Tom Ojienda and Associates wrote to the ODM NEC Chairperson requesting for proceedings with respect to his expulsion.

In his letter that was also copied to Havi & Company advocates, Ojienda told ODM to provide him with various documents including the Resolution by the ODM NEC to expel him, the recommendation by the ODM Disciplinary Tribunal to expel him, the minutes of the meetings held by ODM NEC, Central Committee, and National Elections Board with regard to his expulsion as well as the typed proceedings of the ODM Disciplinary Tribunal with regard to the matter.

Reads the letter: “We note that despite this being an extremely adverse decision against our client, you have not yet issued any communication to him in person with regard to his expulsion. In light of the above, we are writing to request that you immediately issue us with the following documents.”

Gem MP Elisha Odhiambo has also indicated he will challenge the NEC’s decision at the PPDT.

Comedian cum politician Felix Odiwuor on his part shared an old image of him carrying evidence boxes to the Supreme Court, when Azimio la Umoja was challenging President William Ruto’s election in court.

“No trial is too heavy to lift! No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation, he will also provide a way of escape, so that you may be able to endure it. CORINTHIANS 10:13,” the Langata lawmaker said.

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