By Vitalis Kimutai and Peterson Githaiga
The race to succeed former Internal Security Minister George Saitoti in Kajiado North constituency has started in earnest, with political parties having picked their flag bearers to fight it out in the September 17 by-election.
TNA has picked Moses ole Sakuda in the race that will pit him against Kanu’s Paul Gichinga, Peter Mositet (ODM), Salaon Kashorda (UDF), Solomon Kinyanjui (WDM), Anthony Keen (PNU), and Peter Munene of KNC.
However, Sakuda’s nominations hangs in the balance after the High Court issues orders on Friday, barring TNA from presenting his name to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission.
While the other parties chose to directly pick their candidates for the seat, only TNA conducted nominations last week with the use of Independent Electoral Commission registers and translucent ballot boxes.
Sakuda garnering 15,724 votes, against Francis Persimei Gitau’s 634. Returning officer Raymond Omolo declared the results, with tallies from 10 polling stations not having been submitted.
After being declared the winner, Sakuda called on his opponents to ensure peace prevails during the campaign period, adding he won after intensive campaigns in the area whose voters are concentrated in the urban areas of Kiserian, Ngong, and Ongata Rongai.
Though Saitoti as the PNU party leader was the area MP for 24 years, the party may find it a challenge delivering the seat.
Saitoti died in a plane crash at Ngong Forest on June 10, alongside his assistant Orwa Ojodeh, two pilots, and two police officers. ODM, which enjoyed massive support in the constituency in the 2007 General Election, is not riding on the same euphoria this time. Mositet said no candidate would ride on the tribal agenda because the area is cosmopolitan.
Munene, the KNC candidate said: “I will be conducting door to door campaigns to engage with the people on the issues affecting them.”
“KNC is the party to watch in Kajiado North. We have a youthful and development conscious candidate and we are asking voters to rally behind him,” said Assistant minister Peter Kenneth when he toured the area.