The deputy majority leader at the Taita-Taveta County Assembly and Voi ODM chairman John Maghanga today broke ranks with ODM majority leader Cromwel Baridi accusing him of being a “water melon” in the party.
Addressing an ODM meeting in Wundanyi, Maghanga took a surprise swipe at Baridi accusing him of having one foot in another party while still claiming to be an ODM supporter.
“Baridi is my senior in the party but I want to say it here that he has already decamped to another party.I cannot support a leader who does not have steadfast support for ODM,” Maghanga said to the cheering crowd.
Maghanga who is vying for the Voi parliamentary seat, took Baridi by surprise who sat pensively as he was being torn to shreds by his deputy.
The nominated MCA representing people with disabilities, known for his brash and eloquent politics, pointed out that those going around saying people should vote for individuals and not parties were misleading voters.
“Since independence, governments have been made by political parties so it’s foolhardy for those in ODM to tell voters to ignore parties and vote for individuals,” said Maghanga.
He went on: “Baridi should remain in ODM party and fight it out with Mwangola in the party primaries.So why is he scared of ODM nominations which we have been assured will be free and fair?”
During celebrations to mark last year’s Jamhuri Day at Mwatate primary school, Baridi surprised many when he asked voters to ignore political parties and vote for leaders in terms of their abilities, despite him being the ODM majority leader in the TTCA.
However nominated MCA Mary Mngola accused Maghanga of disrespecting the party by openly ironing their dirty linen in public with Baridi.
“Everyone has a democratic right to choose a party of one’s choice, that’s why every election year, old alliances are broken and new ones made,” said Mngola, while suspecting that Maghanga could have been used as a glove puppet by Raymond Mwangola who is vying for the Wundanyi parliamentary seat with Baridi.
captions: top down:
1: File pictures of Cromwel Baridi
2: " " " John Maghanga
3:John Maghanga addressing the Wundanyi ODM rally
4: Hear no evil see no evil: Cromwel Baridi(left) during the Wundanyi ODM rally.Centre is Ray Mwangola and (right) John Maghanga
Since independence, governments have been made by political parties so it’s foolhardy for those in ODM to tell voters to ignore parties and vote for individuals