The past one week has seen a busy schedule for Trans Nzoia politicians as the main players tried all tricks including the formation of alliances to ensure their victory during the 2022 polls. First was a group of Sabaot leaders and elders led by the Trans Nzoia county assembly majority leader and the MCA for Endebess, Patrick Kisiero, who paid a courtesy call on the DP William Ruto at his Sugoi home in Eldoret with the pledge that the community is solidly behind the DP’s 2022 presidential bid.
This was to be followed by another Sabaot group from Trans Nzoia and Mt Elgon led by Job Siangani who led a delegation of Kanu party leaders and activists to Baringo senator Gideon Moi where it was resolved that Gideon visits the county and Mt Elgon constituency in Bungoma county to prepare the party for the 2022 polls. The Kanu entourage was a follow-up to an earlier courtesy call by Devolution CS Eugene Wamalwa, COG boss and Kakamega governor Wycliffe Oparanya and Cotu secretary-general Francis Atwoli to Gideon where sources said the CS as a senior leader from Trans Nzoia county, had sought for the partnership of the Baringo senator in the political affairs of the county ahead of the 2022 general election. After Ruto and Gideon meeting to the two sections of Trans Nzoia leaders, it now came the time for the Ford Kenya party to simultaneously host two parallel meetings with one being fronted by the Ford Kenya party’s Moses Wetang’ula and the other by the Kapomboi MCA Ben Mlipuko.
Wetang’ula’s side that included Kiminini MP Chris Wamalwa and his Kwanza counterpart Ferdinand Wanyonyi at the latter’s home, the group was challenged by their rivals as to why the FK county elections had not been concluded, why Eseli Simiyu had not been invited to the meeting and demand that party nominations for the 2022 polls should be free and fair amongst other issues. At MCA Mlipuko’s closed-door meeting that was graced by both by the FK and Jubilee MCAs led by the minority leader Emmanuel Waswa, the group took issue with Wetang’ula for plotting to stage leadership changes in the county assembly without involving them. A plot was hatched to pick Motosiet MCA Bernard Aliang’ana as the new minority leader, a move that is being contested by fellow FK counterparts Daniel Kaburu, Eric Wafula and Eric Musumba but backed by Jubilee members. On the other hand, the Wetang’ula faction was reported to have dismissed calls to hold fresh county polls to replace Wanyonyi as the county party chairman as demanded by the rival group sponsored by Governor Patrick Khaemba with support from the Wanyonyi’s 2017 Jubilee opponent Kakai Bisau.
The group warned against coups within the party as it prepares for the 2022 crucial voting where Weta is expected to fly the presidential flag. In the recent days, Bisau currently working in DP Ruto’s office has been seen at public functions accompanied by MCAs from both the political divide, an indication the man who vied for the governor’s seat in 2013 on the defunct NFK paty ticket could be bracing for a comeback to the old fold to claim the office that he has missed twice in the past. Chris is being blamed for the fuelling of the bad blood between Wetang’ula and Khaemba and for planting his cronies Joseph Pepela against William Nangulu in Saboti, Benson Milimo against Patrick Simiyu in Cherangany, Wanyonyi in Kwanza against Emmanuel Waswa or either Moses Lupao and Robert Simiyu against Paul Moiben in Endebess.MP is a front runner for governorship seat. The Kiminini seat has no push and pull as the Kiminini MCA David Kisaka seem to have been settled on as the sure bet against secondary school principal Cosmas Nabungolo.
As the politicians seek new alliances ahead of 2022 from Cherangany up to Endebess and Kwanza across Saboti to Kiminini, it will be a fierce of battle of titans for Jubilee, FK and Kanu parties and any other parties that will be associated with Ruto, Eugene and Wetang’ula. In the neigbouring Mt Elgon constituency, area MP Fred Kapondi is facing an acid test from the revamped PS Harry Kimtai and the Mt Elgon Knut executive secretary Stephen Chemomges after the incumbent picked a quarrel with the Sabaot council of elders which has put him in an awkward situation. But Kimtai carries his head high especially after he was elevated to the PS position to help him prepare financially for the fourth stab at the seat. This could be the man to beat considering his closeness with the DP who is the darling of Sabaots. Musalia Mudavadi’s ANC and Kalonzo Musyoka’s Wiper party have insignificant following in the county while Raila Odinga’s ODM is struggling to make a mark. However, ANC has embarked on a programmme to popularise itself across the county. From the emerging trends, the 2013 and 2017 results may repeat themselves where the Bukusu took over the governor’s seat, the Sabaot settled for the senate through Henry Ole Ndiema and the WR through Janet Nangabo was retained by the Bukusu while the five constituencies were shared amongst the other communities.
For the Sabaots, Saboti MCA David Kaboloman has remained adamant to be the running mate for Chris in succeeding Khaemba, Richard Chesebe for the senate, John Meng’wa or Rodgers Bokose to run for the Saboti seat against MP Caleb Amisi and Leonard Moss to replace Kaboloman in Saboti ward. Kanu seems to be safe so far with Nixon Mutuku for the senate. Still for the Sabaot community, Senator Mike Mbito remains the favourite candidate for the county’s top seat. The entry of Chesebe into the political fray has bolstered the commitment of the Sabaots in raising their stake for the county’s leadership. In Cherangany, Ruto counts himself lucky with an economist Julius Tunduria who is expected to be supported by another Ruto’s ally Abraham Sing’oei who is eyeing the governor’s slot to elevate the Kalenjins who are regarded as the number two community in the area after the Bukusus.
Sing’oei, as a Kalenjin from the Nandi subtribe, would like to fill the void being left by the deputy governor Stanley Tarus. This applies to the chief officers in the Khaemba government including CEC member for finance Boniface Wanyonyi (governor) who have chosen to go solo in their future political endevours without involving him. Also in Cherangany, all eyes are focused on one Emily Rono who under the FK umbrella is crisscrossing the constituency vowing to avenge her anger on the Makutano MCA Stephen Njoroge to erase what she described as selective representation. According to M/s Rono, Cherangany as a cosmopolitan area was under the threat of marginalisation of certain communities if women don’t wake up to compete with men for political positions.