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Residents protest against Nduku Kilonzo’s bid for Makueni senate

EASTERN
By Onesmus Nzioka | June 11th 2013
Nduku Kilonzo on Sunday declared her interest in the Makueni senate seat which fell vacant following her husband's death. (Photo:Standard)

By Onesmus Nzioka

Makueni, Kenya: A decision by late Makueni senator Mutula Kilonzo’s widow, Nduku, to vie for the seat has received a blow after residents of Makueni protested against it.

A day after she declared interest in the seat, residents of Wote town held street demonstrations to express their disapproval of her candidature.

Business in the county headquarter was brought to a standstill as residents thronged the streets to protest Nduku’s candidature terming her a spoiler for her step daughter’s chances of succeeding her late father.

Led by former Wote town councilor Joseph Musau, the residents said they have welcomed Kethi Kilonzo’s candidature and are not ready to be treated to another family feud.

“We are ready to support Kethi for this seat, but we do not want to be treated to another family feud. Let Nduku support her step daughter because Kethi declared interest first and is more qualified,” said Musau.

“We are not supporting Kethi because of her late father’s popularity. We support her because we saw her ability to defend the people during the presidential petition against the election of Uhuru Kenyatta at the Supreme Court. We don’t know what Nduku is capable of,” he added.

Members of parliament from Makueni County have also issued a statement denouncing Nduku’s candidature saying they are steadfastly behind Kethi.

Speaking moments after Nduku declared her interest in the seat on Sunday, MPs Daniel Maanzo (Makueni), Kisoi Munyao (Mbooni) and Stephen Mule (Matungulu) said they were not aware of Nduku’s interest in the post and that they were solely behind Kethi.

Maanzo who read the joint statement said Kethi had already been granted a Wiper certificate and soon will be escorted to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission’s offices by former premier Raila Odinga and wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka to present her nomination papers.

“The people of Makueni have already decided that it is Kethi they want to succeed her father and we as Wiper and CORD have already accorded her the ticket. We are waiting for Kalonzo to return to the country so the two CORD leaders can escort her to IEBC and lead unveiling of her candidature,” Maanzo said.

Nduku has been closely associated with Lands cabinet secretary Charity Ngilu who introduced her to the president during a mass at Machakos Catholic Church, Sunday, and also stood by her while fielding questions from journalists about her political ambition.

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