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More In-Fighting Ahead For Kenya's Ruling Party - 2002-09-13

In Kenya, senior officials of the ruling party, KANU, are reportedly headed for a clash over the election of branch officers.

English to Africa reporter Richard Kotey spoke with the secretary general of KANU, Raila Odinga, who has called for the elections in some seventy branches of the Kenya Africa National Union. But the head of the party, Kenyan president Daniel Arap Moi, said no.

Mr. Odinga disagrees – and says the elections must be held before the party’s next presidential nominee is chosen so all party members will have a chance to make themselves heard. He says if they all have a voice in the decision, it will ensure that President Moi does not have free reign to hand-pick his favorite.

The president has already made his preference known; he favors Uhuru Kenyatta, son of the country’s founding father, the late Jomo Kenyatta. Many believe Mr. Moi is doing everything he can to give Mr. Kenyatta an unfair advantage.

Mr. Odinga, himself a would-be candidate, says he is not simply trying to oppose the president but to ensure fairness in all future elections.