Jalang’o: Why I met Ruto at State House

2 min

Lang’ata MP Felix Odiwuor alias Jalang’o. [Denis Kibuchi, Standard]

Besieged Lang’ata MP Felix Odiwuor, alias Jalang’o, has said his State House meeting with President William Ruto which generated a lot of heat leading to his expulsion from ODM meant no harm.

Jalang’o is one of the five MPs kicked out of the Raila Odinga-led ODM after they were branded rebels by reportedly going against party positions.

He was suspended alongside Kisumu Senator Tom Ojienda, Suba MP Caroli Omondi, Bondo MP Gideon Ochanda and Gem MP Elisha Odhiambo.

However, ODM’s decision to kick the MPs out has since been overturned by the Political Parties Dispute Tribunal after they filed petitions challenging their expulsion as they fight to keep their jobs.

Jalang’o, who spoke on Vybez Radio on Thursday, September 14, said he thought it was just normal for the president to meet elected leaders.

“It was just a normal meeting since the president was meeting with elected leaders,” the MP said of the February 7, 2023 meeting that sparked criticism from several ODM members, who accused Jalang’o and the other MPs of betraying the party and reportedly working with the Kenya Kwanza administration.

He added: “At that time, I thought it was a normal meeting because Ruto was meeting with everyone. Later on, the photos were posted and the situation went wild.”

“I later attended an ODM Parliamentary Group meeting as I should but I faced some resistance. It all started with some young men who blocked the entrance even though I later managed to go through with the help of Babu Owino.”

According to the lawmaker, after he gained access to the venue, one of Raila’s bodyguards reportedly approached him and told him to vacate the premises.

He said he was roughed up and at some point, unnamed people started sending him threats.

Jalang’o was also among seven MPs who met with Ruto at State House on Wednesday, September 13.

The Head of State met with the seven MPs led by Ojienda at the State House lawn and held a meeting with them lasting two hours.

The MPs who drove to State House at 1pm left at 3pm. Reports indicated that the MPs discussed priority projects in their constituencies with the president and asked him to help them realise the projects.

Jalang’o said the party stopped inviting him to its meetings. “I was even removed from the party’s WhatsApp groups.”

Jalang’o said he was thereafter subjected to a disciplinary hearing after which he and four other members were expelled, as others were fined.

The MP however maintains that he is still in ODM despite his claim that some party members are trying to push him out.

“I have always been a member of ODM and I have never said I will quit.”

He also said he respects Raila. “I am pained by his presidential election loss. To Raila, I am like his son and he knows. Although I came to terms with Baba’s election loss, I am still emotional about it,” he said.

Apart from the MPs, the Kisumu County Assembly also suspended four nominated MCAs expelled by the ODM party over claims of gross misconduct.

The four MCAs suspended by the Kisumu county assembly after the party revoked their nomination are Carolyne Opar, Kennedy Ajwang, Peter Obaso and Regina Kizito.

The County Assembly Speaker Elisha Oraro said the suspended MCAs will no longer participate in any assembly activities until further notice.


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