As Deputy President William Ruto’s allies were busy explaining to Kenyans why they had to open parallel Juilee Party officers dubbed “Jubilee Asili Centre”, a mysterious man found the name “interesting” and moved to reserve it at the Office of the Registrar of Political Parties, Kahawa Tungu has learnt.
30-year-old Andrew Simiyu hastily made the request to reserve the name last Thursday.
The man, who introduced himself as a businessman to a local media, claims he is yet to get a response from the Registrar Anne Nderitu.
“I am not interested in politics. I am just a businessman engaged in clearing and forwarding. I was just excited by the name,” Simiyu told Daily Nation.
“I am waiting for feedback from the registrar to know the fate of my application.”
The new development is touted as a big blow to Ruto allies who had the intention of using the name in the ongoing political wrangles and even unveil it as a party someday.
Some of the Ruto men now claim that the self-declared businessman is a pawn being used by Ruto’s opponents to frustrate the Jubilee Asili agenda and the DP’s 2022 presidential ambitions.
Jubilee Asili uses symbols as the Jubilee Party but with Ruto’s defunct United Republican Party (URP) colours. URP merged into Jubilee prior to the 2017 General Elections.
Despite Ruto’s right-hand man Kipchumba Murkomen clarifying to the nation that Jubilee Asili is not a party, a section of Kenyans believe that the DP’s camp had the intention of using it as Ruto’s new vehicle in the 2022 race to State House.
Murkomen made the remarks after Ruto met MPs who were recently relieved of their duties at the Jubilee Asili Centre last week. The offices are located on Makindu Road, off Riara Road in Nairobi’s Kilimani area.
The Elgeyo Marakwet Senator insisted that the lawmakers opened the offices after they were denied access to Jubilee Party Headquarters located in Pangani, Nairobi.
But pundits believe launching Jubilee Asili as a party would be a tall order considering the existing laws under the Political Parties Act, 2011.
Some of the DP allies who had allegedly made an attempt to inquire about the possibility of registering Jubilee Asili as a party were told it is illegal.
Section 8 of the Act states that the registrar may refuse an application of a political party if the name of the political party, its abbreviation or the symbol “so nearly resembles the name or symbol, or an abbreviation of the name of another political party”.
Meanwhile, the Registrar of the Political Parties said that Simiyu’s request to reserve the Jubilee Asili name will be evaluated under the existing parties law.