Thirdway Alliance Party leader Ekuru Aukot has blamed bribery, coercion and political sycophancy as the main reasons for the rejection of his referendum initiative, the Punguza Mizigo Bill.
At the same time, Mr Aukot appeared to reveal that his next battleground could be the corridors of justice, where he would be challenging the grounds advanced for the rejection of the Bill.
He said the opposition the referendum drive faces is because of selfish political interests and ethnic mobilisations advanced by politicians afraid of changes the initiative might herald.
He claimed that ward representatives have reported being bribed to reject the Bill, while some have been threatened that they would be de-whipped if they do not tow the party line.
Mr Aukot stated that distortion, lies and selfish political ambitions have clouded the approval of the initiative.
He added that the counties have given simplistic reasons based on technicalities and parties’ leadership interests and not on the views of those they represent.
“It is not being rejected by the general public but by a choreographed plan by a few selfish leaders in some political parties. We are getting reports from county assemblies that money is being dished out for them to shoot down the Bill,” said Mr Aukot during an interview on Citizen TV on Tuesday night.
He dismissed claims that the Bill had not been subjected to public participation, stating that they visited markets to meet members of the public before garnering support from 1.2 million Kenyans.
The Bill has so far been rejected by 22 county assemblies, garnering support only from Uasin Gishu County Assembly.
The initiative needs to secure approval from at least 24 counties to attain the constitutional threshold for a referendum.
Mr Aukot, however, expressed optimism that the he will garner the needed support stating that the party will not relent in its quest to find solutions to problems bedevilling the country.
“I want to assure Kenyans that we will not abandon them. We will continue finding solutions to the problems in the country like ballooning national debt. We will make our next move soon. Watch out for this space,” assured Mr Aukot.
“Biggest success story in the last 25 years. No political leader has been able to do what we have done though the party is only three years old,” said the 2017 presidential candidate.