In Summary
  • The mini poll has revealed shifting political alliances in the region and exposed Wiper party leader Kalonzo Musyoka as a general without ground troops.
  • Mr Musyoka’s own indecisiveness and failure to take a firm stand in the constituency left his supporters scattered in different fronts, giving his rivals a chance to shine and offer alternative leadership.
  • When ODM leader Raila Odinga asked Governor Mutua to rally the Kamba community in Kibra to vote for his candidate, he laid bare the isolation Mr Musyoka is facing both at home and within Nasa.

As voters in Kibra, Nairobi, elect a new member of Parliament, curious is how the by-election has shaped politics in the faraway Ukambani region.

The mini poll has revealed shifting political alliances in the region and exposed Wiper party leader Kalonzo Musyoka as a general without ground troops.

Having announced in January that they would ally the Kamba community towards a different political direction, it wasn’t a surprise when three governors from Mr Musyoka’s backyard endorsed Bernard Imran Okoth, the Orange Democratic Movement's candidate.

INDECISIVENESS

Mr Musyoka’s own indecisiveness and failure to take a firm stand in the constituency left his supporters scattered in different fronts, giving his rivals a chance to shine and offer alternative leadership.

Mr Musyoka unveiled musician Jackson Makini alias Prezzo as the Wiper candidate for Kibra during the party's National Executive Council meeting that all allied MPs and senators attended.

He rescinded the move a day later and announced that Wiper would not field a candidate and would instead support Ford Kenya’s Khamisi Butichi in return for the support party leader and Bungoma Senator Moses Wetang'ula gave their candidate in the Embakasi South by-election..

Interestingly, however, Mr Musyoka and Wiper MPs never set foot in Kibra to campaign for Mr Butichi, leaving a void that Governors Alfred Mutua (Machakos), Kivutha Kibwana (Makueni) and Charity Ngilu (Kitui) filled.

Some Wiper loyalists, including Embakasi south MP Julius Mawathe and former Kathiani MP Wavinya Ndeti openly campaigned for Jubilee Party's candidate McDonald Mariga, while invoking Mr Musyoka’s name.

MUTUA'S ROLE

When ODM leader Raila Odinga asked Governor Mutua to rally the Kamba community in Kibra to vote for his candidate, he laid bare the isolation Mr Musyoka is facing both at home and within the National Super Alliance (Nasa).

The Machakos county boss mobilised grassroots leaders of the Kamba community to meet Mr Odinga at the Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Foundation's offices last Saturday, ahead of their joint campaign rally the next day to drum up support for Mr Okoth.

Mr Odinga tasked Dr Mutua withe ensuring the significant Kamba vote goes to the ODM candidate, a role that Mr Musyoka would have played had the two been on good terms.

The Kamba community in the cosmopolitan constituency, the third largest after the Luo and Luhya, is considered a crucial swing vote that may decide the outcome of the by-election.

MPs LUKEWARM

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