skip to Main Content

Raila’s AU joint campaign secretariat to be unveiled this week


By Moses Muli

Published: July 9, 2024, 11:22 AM

Azimio Leader Raila Odinga’s bid for the chairperson of the African Union Commission is taking shape with a joint campaign secretariat expected to be unveiled this week.

The joint secretariat will bring together strategy and campaign teams from Raila’s camp and the government’s side.

The Star has established the secretariat will be domiciled at the Railways Building which houses the office of the Prime Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi.

President William Ruto’s government has promised to pull out all the stops to ensure Raila secures the highly coveted seat that would catapult him to the stature of head of state.

Former Kenyan ambassador to the US Elkanah Odembo confirmed that the government had committed to set up the joint secretariat within this week.

”The Joint Secretariat will be in place by the end of next week (this week),” Odembo told the Star in a text message.

The diplomat said the submission of Raila’s candidature to the AU secretariat will happen in the ”third week of July”.

Kenya is racing against time to officially nominate Raila for the AUC post.

This comes after the government missed its June 30 deadline, attributing its delay to the protests witnessed in the country over the last three weeks.

The African Union Commission has set August 6 as the deadline for the submission of the candidacy of the various hopefuls seeking to succeed Moussa Faki.

In a communiqué issued by the Office of the Legal Council in May, the AUC said each candidate for the position of chairperson would be required to submit a curriculum vitae (CV) in the approved AU format together with a brief statement of his or her vision for the position.

This means that Kenya will submit the candidacy of Raila, his CV and his vision statement in English, Arabic, French, Portuguese, Spanish and Kiswahili.

Raila has intensified his campaigns for the AUC post with the government lining up a series of diplomatic efforts for him.

Over the weekend, Raila met East African Community (EAC) ministers for foreign affairs in Zanzibar, explaining his agenda for the continent.

“I stand before you as a candidate deeply committed to the principles of unity, peace, and development,” Odinga said.

“Now is the right time for my leadership, as Africa navigates through a transformative period requiring strong and visionary leadership.”

Raila underscored the importance of regional representation within the larger African Union formation, emphasizing the readiness of the East Africa region towards producing the next AU chairperson.

“The time is ripe for East Africa to assume the helm of the AU leadership. The AU rotational leadership policy places our region at the best position possible this time round,” Raila said.

Raila said his visionary leadership in the multi-faceted transition around the continent is what he will be banking on.

He said it is time to take Africa and her interests to the next level and make Africa a destination for investment and unlocking untapped economic opportunities.

“My tenure as AU’s Special Envoy for infrastructure equipped me with the understanding of Africa’s challenges and the options, we have to advance solutions to help move our continent into the next frontier,” Raila said.

The ongoing ministerial meeting serves as a pivotal forum for advancing continental cooperation and leadership, with discussions focused on selecting a candidate who can effectively guide Africa toward unity, prosperity, and global influence.

During the meeting, Prime Cabinet Secretary and Cabinet Secretary for Foreign and Diaspora Affairs Musalia Mudavadi urged the EAC member states to support Raila’s candidature.

Mudavadi said Raila is better placed to represent the EAC region in the race adding that his credentials and experience place him in an advantageous position for the AUC job.

“We believe and are certain that this is the time for our region to produce the chairperson who will be at the helm of the continental leadership. I urge all member states to keenly scrutinize Odinga’s candidacy so that we can speak with one voice” Mudavadi said.

Last week, Foreign Affairs Principal Secretary Korir Sing ’Oei chaired the first technical committee comprising the government and Odinga’s teams after a long lull that triggered concerns about Kenya’s candidature.

“The committee reviewed the progress made towards submission of the formal application, the official launch of candidature and the outreach programme,” Sing’oei said after the meeting.

Those who sit in Raila’s AUC campaigns strategy team include Odembo, Intergovernmental Authority on Development (Igad) former Executive Director Mahboub Maalim, Ambassador Anthony Okara, professor Makau Mutua and ex-Nyeri Deputy Governor Caroline Karugu.

This Post Has 0 Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back To Top