How Kalonzo humiliation was plotted

It has now emerged that the heckling of one of the ODM-K presidential aspirant Kalonzo Musyoka at the would-have-been party unity rally in Mombasa was indeed a pre-planned and well executed affair.

Details unearthed confirm that supporters of a leading ODM-K presidential hopeful held secret meetings before the rally. Sources say that it is in those meetings that Kalonzo’s humiliation was planned.

The secret meetings took place at Mombasa’s Casablanca Spot, which is owned by a Coast civic leader closely related to a key ODM-K luminary.

The civic leader was entirely in charge of organizing the Mombasa rally, first set to take place at the famous Tononoka Grounds, but whose venue was abruptly changed at the last minute. The change of venue, we are informed, was ostensibly to suit the anti-Kalonzo scheme.

The Mwingi North legislator’s agents as well as those of other ODM-K hopefuls were kept in the dark as the last minute arrangements were made and only one aspirant, area MP Najib Balala, was left to inform others about the details.

Sources allege that Balala as well as Changamwe MP Ramadhan Kajembe, were privy to the last minute secret arrangements. Both are well known supporters of one of the ODM-K luminaries.

Investigations indicate that the civic leader personally recruited the youths who heckled Kalonzo. He also hired one John Mwai to supervise printing of T-shirts, banners and symbols that identifies with one of the ODM-K aspirants.

The chairman of the Coast province Networking Committee (CPNC) for Kalonzo Musyoka, Mrs Shakilla Omar, confirmed that her group was not involved in the last minute preparations of the Mombasa rally, including the abrupt change of venue.

“We were only told Balala was handling the matter and was in touch with all ODM-K presidential hopefuls”, she said when contacted on telephone.

Omar says it al started on Wednesday, five days before the rally, when Kalonzo’s representatives on the rally organizing committee were informed that the venue had changed from the historical Tononoka Grounds to a primary school in the neighbourhood. No reasons were given for the change.

She goes on, “come Friday, the eve of the meeting, we were summoned for a final-touches meeting at the Mombasa Show Grounds. On arrival at the venue, we found representatives of a rival presidential hopeful leaving the venue.

On inquiring what could have been going on, we were told the area MP, Balala had called to say there would be no need for the meeting because the presidential hopefuls were handling everything at their level. At that moment we smelled a rat,” says Omar.

Other sources say supporters of a key ODM-K aspirant hijacked entire security arrangements for the rally after playing a trick on the organizing committee.

“The initial plan was that the committee recruits a neutral team of 100 security team to man the dais. Then all over a sudden we were told that Mombasa MPs, being hosts to the meeting, would be taking care of the security arrangements. It turned out that a team from just one of the candidates had already been put on stand-by for the function,” they say.

Come Saturday and Kalonzo’s people found themselves in a confused state and unable to brief their man exactly what was going on.

Says Omar “We were quite embarrassed that we didn’t know what to tell our candidate”. She discloses that at that juncture, Kalonzo decided not to attend the meeting but was prevailed upon by key allies not to do so.

Information availed is that T-shirts and placards in support of one candidate were distributed at the Mombasa Village Club and behind the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) offices on the eve of the rally.

Contacted however, Mvita MP, Najib Balala insisted there was no plot to humiliate Kalonzo.

He said “The rally was genuinely called for the purposes of unity in ODM. It is true there was tension a few days before it took place but this is normal because of the support people have for different preffered candidates.”

Balala added that himself being a presidential hopeful, he would not be party to schemes intended to favour one candidate over the other.

“The issue came up during our luncheon will all the hopefuls just before the rally and where we agreed that presidential candidates would not declare their support or objection to the contentious issue (the method to pick our party flag bearer),” he says.

Although Balala admits that Kalonzo communicated to him, fears that there would be tension at the meeting, he insists that there was no plot to humiliate him or any other presidential candidate.

He says, “The only thing I know for sure is that Coast province is with me and they will go wherever I will go. And for now, I am neutral.”

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