In a significant move ahead of the party elections scheduled for December, the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) has announced major changes to its leadership positions within the Nairobi County Assembly. This decision comes amidst internal party disputes and calls for the removal of the UDA secretary general, Cleophas Malala.
The UDA, a prominent faction of the ruling Kenya Kwanza coalition, has lately been subject to internal disagreements. Reports suggest a possible divide between President William Ruto and his deputy, Rigathi Gachagua. These leadership changes appear to be an attempt to streamline the party’s management and solidify its position.
In an official statement, Cleophas Malala declared that in compliance with standing orders of the Nairobi County Assembly, South B MCA Waithera Chege has been appointed as the Minority leader, replacing Waithaka MCA Antony Kiragu. The responsibilities of the South B MCA will be shared with Githurai MCA Deonysias Mwangi, who will act as deputy.
Expressing gratitude to the party and President Ruto, Waithera said, “I am committed to serving our members with dedication. Unity and collaboration are essential, and I will ensure that confidence in the party leadership at the Assembly is restored.” She emphasized her commitment to working with everyone, including those who have been recently replaced.
Furthermore, Umoja One MCA Mark Mugambi has been removed from his position as the Minority whip and will be succeeded by nominated MCA Joyce Muthoni. Claycity MCA Samora Mwaura is now set to take over as the deputy minority whip at the Nairobi County Assembly.
Explaining the rationale behind these changes, Malala stated that the decisions were reached during a meeting involving the ruling party’s elected leaders in Nairobi. He pointed out that it was collectively agreed upon to replace the minority leader and the minority whip. Documents detailing the minutes of this decisive meeting, along with the signed attendance record of the members present, have been shared.
Insiders believe these reshuffles might be part of the party’s broader strategy to remove members perceived as disloyal. With the 2027 elections on the horizon, both UDA and the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) are making concerted efforts to bolster their grassroots support. In a similar vein, ODM has also expelled some of its elected leaders who were collaborating with the ruling coalition, signaling a move to reassert the party’s authority.
The formal communication detailing these leadership changes has been directed to the County Assembly’s top management and the minority leaders. Nairobi County Speaker Ken Ng’ondi is slated to disseminate this information in a meeting with the assembly on Tuesday.
As political alliances continue to shift and parties reposition themselves, it remains to be seen how these changes will impact UDA’s prospects in the upcoming elections and its relationship with coalition partners.