- The Marakwet have dominated key leadership positions since 2013, making Keiyos feel sidelined.
- Mr Tolgos and Mr Murkomen won the tickets but this time Keiyo lost the woman rep Jubilee ticket to the a Marakwet, Ms Jane Kiptoo.
The battle for Elgeyo-Marakwet governor’s seat has gone a notch higher, following the entrance of an independent candidate being fronted by one of the biggest communities in the region.
Mr Moses Changwony, who polled third in the Jubilee Party primaries in April, quit the party and submitted his bid for the gubernatorial seat as an independent.
A former Sasini Tea Chief Executive, Mr Changwony is from the Keiyo community, which feels sidelined in the county leadership dominated by their neighbours from Marakwet.
The county is mainly made up of the two communities, hence the origin of the name of the county.
However, the Marakwet have dominated key leadership positions since 2013, making Keiyos feel sidelined.
In 2013, for instance, Governor Alex Tolgos and Senator Kipchumba Murkomen, who are both Marakwets, won the seats, leaving the woman rep seat to Keiyo’s Susan Chebet.
In the last Jubilee nominations, Mr Tolgos and Mr Murkomen won the tickets but this time Keiyo lost the woman rep Jubilee ticket to the a Marakwet, Ms Jane Kiptoo.
This has aggrieved the Keiyo more as they risk not having anyone to represent them in the county leadership if all the party nominees are elected in August.
Following the outcome, the Keiyo held a strategic meeting in Iten where they agreed to front independent candidates for key seats including governors.
Mr Changwony has the support of other Keiyo candidates who lost in the primaries.
The community has also fronted two independent candidates for the woman representative’s seat, Ms Florence Korat and Dr Susan Chebet to battle it out with Ms Kiptoo.
Analysts however say the fronting of two candidates would still be an advantage to Ms Kiptoo of Jubilee.