Raila heads to Kakamega for ODM mass recruitment

ODM leader Raila Odinga addressed Nyamache residents in Kisii County on November 28, 2023. [Sammy Omingo, Standard]

ODM leader Raila Odinga will on Friday embark on a mission to solidify his support base in Western.

Raila will pitch tents in Shinyalu and Lurambi constituencies, Kakamega county, for the launch of ODM mass registration drive according to a revised itinerary released by the party today.

The Azimio leader will be seeking to counter the growing UDA wave in the region perceived as an ODM stronghold.

Raila is also expected to attend the funeral of former ODM Nominated Senator and MCA in the Kakamega county assembly Godliver Omondi in Kholera ward, Matungu constituency.

On Monday, Raila is expected to launch the ODM registration drive in Busia County.  The former premier canceled his tour of Kakamega North at the eleventh hour. 

He announced on November 10 that the party would embark on nationwide recruitment in a bid to revamp its image ahead of the 2027 elections.

Raila kicked off his popularisation drive in Siaya and Homa Bay a fortnight ago where he called on Kenyans of goodwill to join the party that stands a better chance of liberating the nation.

Among the ladders who will play host to Raila is ODM deputy party leader and former Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya, Governors Fernandes Barasa (Kakamega) and Paul Otuoma (Busia), MPs Nabii Nabwera (Lugari), Elsie Muhanda (Kakamega Woman MP), Titus Khamala among others.

"We met party delegates in Kakamega to discuss strategies of how we would welcome our party leader and help popularize the party. We plan to recruit new members from village to county levels so that come 2027 we have a strong team," said Nabwera.

Raila's tour comes even as State agencies have trained their guns on Oparanya who has since been summoned several times by the Ethics and Anticorruption Commission (EACC) and his homes ransacked by officers from the Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI).

The ODM deputy party leader’s bank accounts were also frozen over alleged graft while serving as the county chief. 

Oparanya believes that the State is frustrated because of supporting ODM.

Raila's tour also comes at a time when ODM has announced the possibility of returning to the streets over the rising cost of living.

The ODM leader has told employers to stop remitting housing levy after the High Court declared it unconstitutional.

President William Ruto toured Western two months ago where he promised to revive the sugar industry, the region’s economic mainstay.

The Kenya Kwanza administration has so far written off Nzoia Sugar's debts and last week Western leaders met with the President and urged him to write off Mumias Sugar Company's debt of over Sh39 billion.

The Head of State said despite the miller being largely privately owned and the State had just some 20 per cent shares, he could form a team of experts to see to it that the debts were written off

It will be interesting to see how the leaders who met the President act during Raila's tour of Western.

Out of the 13 leaders who met Ruto, 10 were ODM members.

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