ODM Party Leader Should Call the Vote

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Two urgent reforms in ODM which I see as necessary for transitionary survival of the movement. First, ODM should have one Deputy Party Leader, not two. Second, this DPL should be the ‘heir apparent’ for the movement ahead of 2027.

Two groups are emerging within the party which should neccesitate the vote call.


This group coalesces around Oparanya as the party’s best bet for the future. It is made up of mainly Central Nyanza Luo politicians, pockets of Western, parts of Nairobi and no other known region. It remains to be seen where else does Oparanya has the votes.


This group sees Hassan Ali Joho as the best candidate to lead ODM in the ‘post-Odinga’ world. It is made up mostly of South Nyanza politicians, the entire Coast, the entire North Eastern, the capital vote and pockets of Rift Valley, Eastern and Central and elsewhere across the party.


Obviously, my dog in the fight is Hassan Ali Joho. In Joho the party retains the national stature it needs to fight post-Odinga elections. I have no vote to cast for him but he is – my crystal ball tells me – the party’s steady ship for the perilous waters that is Kenya’s politics.

I also know in a free and fair campaign within the party, where the Party Leader has no favourite, he will thrash Omwami badly!


For ODM to remain united, at least until the coast is clear (that is, until Baba bags the AUC thing) I’d rather the party maintains the status quo. I do not know whether that is possible when Baba bags this AUC thing but I foresee an irrepressible fallout.

Dikembe Disembe is a political researcher and writer

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