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Newspaper article sparks ODM-Wiper rivalry in Nasa

An article by scholar and political analyst, Barack Muluka, which was published on the Saturday Nation, has evoked the simmering rivalry between two major partners in the National Super Alliance (Nasa).

With Nasa still grappling with the question of who will be their flag bearer during the August 8 general elections, Muluka argued that ODM party leader “Raila Odinga would be a bad choice for Nasa presidential candidate.”

“The man (Odinga) may be the most popular choice within Nasa strongholds, but the least acceptable everywhere else. This matters,” Muluka wrote.

In his hard hitting article, Muluka opined that a ticket that puts Musalia Mudavadi (ANC) and Kalonzo Musyoka (Wiper) on the ballot paper would be the opposition outfit’s best option.

This is what seems to have driven a wedge between the supporters of Mr Odinga and those of Mr Musyoka.

ODM’s Communications Director, Phillip Etale, is among those who have been sucked into the debate.

In a Facebook post on Sunday, Mr Etale accused the Wiper party of “killing” Nasa’s dream of dislodging President Uhuru Kenyatta from power.

Mr Etale also accuses the Wiper communication team of sharing bit by bit of the said article purely to taunt ODM supporters.

Trying to whip unnecessary emotions through paid up newspaper articles will kill the dream. This is Kenya’s moment to have good leadership and not empty rhetoric that is aimed at diving a noble cause,” Mr Muluka wrote.

Nasa is yet to pick its flag bearer with Odinga, Kalonzo, Mudavadi and Ford Kenya party leader, Moses Wetangula, all eyeing the ticket.

At the same time, ODM has accused Wiper of poaching its members, including former Cabinet Minister, Chiarau Ali Mwakwere, who recently decamped from the Jubilee coalition to the opposition.