MP-elect rewrites Kitutu Masaba history by taking seat on his first attempt

Kitutu Masaba M- elect Clive Ombane Gisairo (left) receives his election certificate from Returning Officer Daniel Ambuko. [Stanley Ongwae, Standard]

Kitutu Masaba MP-elect Clive Ombane Gisairo may have started his journey to Parliament more than 15 years ago, but no one would guess his long-term political plan.

The international marketing consultant only surfaced in 2020 to grab the seat, becoming the youngest person to be elected for that seat at 38 and also the first to win at the first attempt.

Gisairo, a University of Nairobi Bachelor of Commerce graduate, started his journey quietly in 2007 through a community empowerment drive dubbed the One-Hen Campaign.

In the empowerment model, he would gift select poor households with a ‘seed’ hen, and he demand another chicken from their multiplied flock after some period.

Through the One Hen Campaign economic empowerment model, Gisairo was able to traverse nearly all villages of Kitutu Masaba, giving less disadvantaged homes seed hens.

Before he would pronounce his intentions to vie for the Kitutu Masaba MP seat, Gisairo won the Mandela Washington Fellowship for Young African Leaders.

He had also won the UN-Habitat Youth Innovation and Entrepreneurship Award that was sponsored by UN-Habitat and International Ecological Safety Collaboration Organization (IESCO).

The latest social campaign that made the voters like him was that of gifting new mothers with chicken and offering scholarships to teenage mothers who dropped out of school.

The One Hen Campaign made the entire constituency recognise him and he is known as Clive Gisairo “yule wa kuku (the one of hens).”

That was the campaign tag with which he won the hearts of 31,815 Kitutu Masaba voters who picked him ahead of 14 other candidates including the incumbent Shadrack Mose of United Democratic Alliance who emerged second with 14,525 votes.

Others who came close were Edward Obwocha of Jubilee Party (10,291 votes), James Misati of PPOK Party (6,042 votes), Victor Swanya of Wiper (3,638 votes) and Walter Makworo of UPA who got slightly over 1,000 votes.

By winning the Kitutu seat, Gisairo re-wrote the constituency’s longstanding polling history.

For the 33 years that the constituency has been in existence, only candidates who had unsuccessfully sought its parliamentary seat more than once got elected.

That is how the outgoing MP Shadrack Mose was elected in 2017 after unsuccessfully seeking it twice.

Mose contested in 2007 and 2013 and won the seat in 2017.

Mose’s predecessor, Timothy Bosire, was also elected after two unsuccessful attempts in 2002 and 2007.

Mwancha Okioma, who was elected in 2002, had also failed to capture the seat in a previous election. 

Walter Nyambati was elected in 2007 after campaigning on the mantra that he was the Biblical Naomi who was regarded as a long suffering character in the Bible.

Only multiparty activist, the late George Anyona Moseti was re-elected as Kitutu Masaba MP between 1992 and 2002.

Among the things Gisairo says he will prioritise is upgrading of all roads, changing the system of awarding educational bursaries and distribution of development projects.

“I definitely know the people of Kitutu Masaba trust my leadership qualities and I hope to live up to their expectations,” Gisairo said after he was declared the winner.

Gisairo joins three other Azimio lawmakers who were elected from Nyamira County: Senator Okong’o Mogeni (ODM), Jerusha Momanyi (Jubilee), Patrick Osero (ODM) and Steve Mogaka (Jubilee). There is one UDA legislator, Joash Nyamoko, from Nyamira County.