UDA Members in Meru Switch Allegiance to ODM after Ruto’s Visit

A faction of United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party members in Meru has made a decisive move to defect to the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party. This development follows closely on the heels of President William Ruto’s recent visit to the county.

During an ODM recruitment drive spearheaded by the party leader Raila Odinga in Zablon Mathenge, Meru county, on Saturday, February 3, 2024, enthusiastic youths expressed their satisfaction with the switch, citing disillusionment with the ruling party’s inability to address their concerns.

The youths vocalized their disappointment, attributing their defection to the government’s perceived lack of consideration during policy changes, which they claim eroded their faith in the current administration. Speaking passionately during the ODM recruitment event, the group emphasized their complete detachment from UDA politics, asserting that they no longer wished to be associated with it.

“Tunashukuru sana Raila Odinga kwa ujieweko wake hapa Meru, hawa vijana unaowaona hapa wamekua katika chama cha UDA, tumetembea nao safari ndefu sana na hawa watu wa kutenga, tumetengwa tukatengwa mpaka tumeamua kujitenga na hio siasa ya UDA. Kuanzia leo baba hii ni damu changa, hii Meru kuna kasumba imieshi, babu zetu wameuziwa na babu zao wakatuuzia sisi, sasa tunakata minyororo baba, hii rika we jua kuanzia sasa ni ODM,” passionately declared one of the leaders, Osman.

This development comes just weeks after a similar occurrence in Ugunja, where UDA youth members, including a section of boda boda operators, defected from the President William Ruto-led party. The Ugunja defectors, expressing their dissatisfaction, lamented suffering and unfulfilled promises from the UDA party.

“I’m very happy to come back to the ODM party because where I was UDA, we were suffering because our president was always saying nimetenga, so we as youths and boda boda riders have decided to come back to the ODM party,” shared Maurice Amenya, the chairman of Ugunja Boda Boda Riders Association, during a press conference.

The youth not only rejoined ODM but also encouraged their counterparts across the country to follow suit and abandon the ruling party, asserting that there were no tangible benefits to be gained from staying with UDA.

“I want to tell every youth listening that this government has nothing to offer to the youth apart from promises which we believe the next government will fulfil. So now I just want to request the ODM office to help us cause we want to do mass recruitment,” added one of the passionate youths.

As political realignments continue to unfold, these defections in both Meru and Ugunja underscore a growing trend of disenchanted youth seeking alternatives and expressing their discontent with the status quo. The impact of these shifts on the political landscape remains to be seen as the nation approaches a crucial period in its political calendar.


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