By Obegi Malack
ODM Party leader Raila Odinga has said Azimio la Umoja Movement will use consensus or nominations to pick Kajiado gubernatorial candidates for the Azimio ticket in the 2022 general election.
Raila revealed this during the funeral of Mzee Mositet Korinko, father to former Senator of Kajiado Peter Mositet in Kiserian on Monday.
“The one who will not get a ticket, we will work with him, we do not want confrontations among our aspirants in Azimio,” he said.
He called on Azimio gubernatorial contenders governor Joseph ole Lenku (Jubilee), former governor David Nkedianye (ODM) and Tarayia ole Kores (ODM) to hold peaceful campaigns and not take politics as a matter of life and death.
Raila’s statement comes after heated political debates on who will carry the Azimio ticket, with two top contenders Nkedianye and Lenku facing off during a number of events.
Political tension was witnessed during the burial as Nkedianye’s supporters interrupted Lenku’s speech. It took governor Lenku’s staff to calm down the charged supporters.
The Kajiado North constituency which has majority votes has become unfriendly to the governor after MP Joseph Manje entered into coalition with Nkedianye. Several MCAs from the region who supported Lenku in 2017 have also decamped to UDA and are now supporting veteran politician Katoo ole Metito who has been an MP in Kajiado South for 20 years.
The county five Members of Parliament have also declared their support to different aspirants, with Kajiado West MP George Sunkuyia supporting Katoo while Kajiado East MP Peris Tobiko is vying for governor position through UDA.
Kajiado Central MP Kanchori Memusi is seen as having a soft spot for former governor Nkedianye. He has been in the frontline with Nkedianye in leading ODM members in selecting ODM officials in the county.
Lenku will focus in convincing the electorates that he was behind major projects in the region such as World Bank funded Ngong Market; in Kajiado East the county constructed a full flagged primary school.
According to political analyst Jared Maina, Raila will have a hard time in getting the right candidate if he allows negotiated democracy putting in mind Lenku enjoys power of incumbency, with Nkedianye seen as ODM politician who has been popularizing the party in the recent past also having an upper hand in cosmopolitan regions.
Maina says the aspirants should be allowed to participate in nominations for wananchi to select their candidate, adding that negotiated democracy should not be allowed since it may lead to decamping to opposition party UDA.
According to insiders the incumbent governor is pushing to have a direct ticket while his opponents Nkedianye and Kores are for nominations.
The governor’s close supporters have already decamped to ODM party while others have declared their support for UDA. The Jubilee Party seems to have little attraction from the politicians.
The UDA party gubernatorial contenders are legislator Metito and MP Peris Tobiko who are also making inroads a head of the UDA nominations. Former NTSA director general Francis Meja who is also vying in the party seems to have a slow start even after launching his bid in an event attended by DP William Ruto.
Tobiko, a University of Nairobi political science graduate seems to have slowed Katoo’s wave in UDA. The first Maasai woman MP is known as a fearless leader who speaks her mind anytime.
The DP’s party also seems to have a strong support in the county and both movements Azimio and UDA may benefit from nomination fallouts.
Ruto’s u-turn on his hard stance on forming coalitions may also see other parties supporting the DP have candidates in the ballot.
Clan politics will also playout between two main Maasai sections in Kajiado county, Orok-Kiteng (Black Cows) and Odo-mongi (Red cows). Nkedianye is from bigger Odo-mongi section and Kores while Lenku is Orok-Kiteng.
Cosmopolitan regions Kajiado North and Kajiado East constituencies will have a major impact on who will lead the county as they carry the largest number of voters who are non-Maasais.