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Mt Kenya East's dreams dashed as ODM leader overlooks Munya

CENTRAL
By Phares Mutembei | May 17th 2022 | 3 min read
By Phares Mutembei | May 17th 2022
CENTRAL

 

Meru MCAs led by Minority leader Ayub Bundi and Jubilee Woman rep aspirant Gakii Mbui and others address the press at Makutano in North Imenti. [Phares Mutembei,  Standard]

 

Agriculture CS Peter Munya may have missed the Azimio La Umoja-One Kenya Coalition running mate slot, but all is not lost.

He has emerged as the luckiest Cabinet member who could seamlessly roll into the new government if the team wins in August.

Azimio’s presidential aspirant Raila Odinga named a partial Cabinet yesterday when he unveiled Ms Martha Karua as his running mate.

It was confirmation of the adept political player CS Munya has established himself to be in the last few years, possibly earning his place in government for 10 continuous years.

But Mr Munya’s naming as CS of Agriculture and chairman of the Kenya Productive Sector was another confirmation that Mt Kenya East which comprises Embu, Meru and Tharaka Nithi would not get a deputy position in the two main coalitions.

But the lone appointment of Mr Munya besides Ms Karua from Mt Kenya raised queries on the perceived influence outgoing President Uhuru Kenyatta is expected to have in the Azimio government.

No prospective running mate candidates from the area — Mr Peter Kenneth and Ms Sabina Chege — were lined up for any Cabinet slots. But sources hinted that Mr Kenyatta will, however, influence future appointments.

For Mt Kenya East, it was the second day of disappointment after Prof Kithure Kindiki missed the chance to become DP William Ruto’s running mate under Kenya Kwanza.

Leaders from various political groups and the Njuri Ncheke Council of Elders expressed mixed reactions after CS Munya missed the number two slot.

Meru Assembly Minority Leader Ayub Bundi who was set to become Munya’s running mate in the race for Meru governor before President Kenyatta prevailed upon him to stay on as Agriculture CS welcomed the gesture to retain him in the Agriculture ministry.

But Njuri Ncheke Council of Elders Secretary-General Washington Muthamia was disappointed that DP Ruto and Mr Odinga preferred other running mates. 

Nkomo MCA Kithinji Ethaiba said: “I expected Munya to get the running mate position, judging by the work he had done and being bold enough to campaign for Mr Odinga in Meru.” 

Expectations were high that either CS Munya or Tharaka Nithi Senator Kindiki would be named as running mates for Mr Odinga and DP Ruto.

Politician Nicholas Kanyatta who is running for Nkuene MCA said should Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka turn down the Chief Cabinet Secretary, the seat should be given to CS Munya. “We are happy with what Munya got, but still hopeful for more,” he added.

Prof Kindiki and Mr Munya, both former law lecturers at Moi University, have come a long way. Though in different political formations and from different counties, the Agriculture CS and senator Kindiki enjoyed a close friendship during their teaching days.

Both had announced plans to run for the presidency in the past, but with the chance of becoming Deputy President now gone, the two are expected to chart their future political journeys on different paths.

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