The August 8 general elections in Kenya is just around the corner.
With just about 80 days left before Kenyans go to the national elections process, aspirants for various seats are getting ready to hit the campaign trail once again after the party primaries that took place last month.
The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) set the official date of commencing campaigns and Kenyans are eagerly awaiting to hear from the over 17,000 aspirants who were cleared by IEBC to vie.
Kenyans are watching very closely to see who will carry the day, especially for the Presidential and gubernatorial seats such as those in very hotly contested areas as Nairobi, Kisumu, Migori, Kiambu and Uasin Gishu County.
Yesterday, Deputy President William Ruto, during a live interview said that his Jubilee party will beat NASA alliance by more than 70 percent come the general elections. The current Uasin Gishu county governor Jackson Mandago, has openly criticized and accused the DP of meddling with the area politics, and political pundits are now saying that with the current state of affairs, Mandago is headed for a grueling task of retaining his seat.
Fearing possible voter apathy in his strongholds, Mandago seems to have changed tack and is now embracing a hitherto unpalatable reality of joining forces with Isaac Ruto of Chama Cha Mashinani, to raise the 1.5 million votes he needs to secure a NASA win in the great Rift, thereby reducing Jubilee’s voting block in the area as it was in 2013.
Analysts have pondered over Mandago’s recent invitation of NASA principals to Eldoret when they held a huge rally in the town, in a bid to win over the Rift Valley voters to support Raila and Kalonzo for the presidency.
This has not augured well with residents as they are now saying that the incumbent is a ‘NASA mole’, seeing as his collaboration with Jubilee rebels Oscar Sudi, Alfred Keter and Isaac Ruto, is becoming obvious.
On social media, residents are creating the perception that Mandago is truly headed for NASA, seeing as his chances of surviving the general election are very slim compared to his flawed win during the party primaries in April.
“Before the entry of Buzeki, governor Mandago had ‘declared’ himself the county de facto leader even before the election is held. He had dismissed his earlier competitors as weaklings without political network,” said Sammy Kiplagat, a resident from Moiben constituency.
Kiplagat said Buzeki has forced the incumbent to retreat to the drawing table.
“We are witnessing some supporters of the incumbent spewing tribal undertones suggesting that the gubernatorial seat is a preserve of the Nandi sub-tribe which is purportedly the populous in the region,” said Kiplagat. This, he observed, was splitting residents along ethnic lines.
Governor Mandago has not denied the allegations that he is planning a move to NASA or shifting his allegiance but what residents say is they will not tolerate a leader who lords and dictates over them, which is why they will give Buzeki all their votes on August 8.
“We have had enough, the incumbent is threatening us with violence if we do not vote him in on August, but we refuse to be cowed. We know what we want, and him stealing votes during the nominations will not happen again, we will throw him out.”
The main campaigns resume on May 28, 2017 as per the IEBC schedule.