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Nguu Masumba by-election: Kalonzo beaten as Kibwana and Muthama rejoice

EASTERN
By Steve Nzioka | October 16th 2021

Timothy Maneno, the Nguu Masumba MCA elect in Makueni County receiving a certificate from Maureen Oyaro, Kibwezi West constituency Returning Officer.

Kalonzo Musyoka’s Wiper party on Thursday suffered a major political setback after his man in the Nguu Masumba by-election in Kibwezi West, Makueni County, lost.

The loss for Kalonzo is a double tragedy.

On Monday when the One Kenya Alliance (OKA) leaders crisscrossed the area drumming support for the Wiper candidate Eshio Mwaiwa, they pleaded with voters not to shame the former vice president since the outcome of the by-election will determine his bargaining power in the coalition.

“The OKA alliance is gaining momentum day and night. We have won against them in Kabuchai and in other regions including Machakos senatorial seat, and in this one give it to the Wiper candidate. We have come here to stand with Mr Musyoka to confirm to you that we are the next government,” said Ford Kenya Moses Wetang’ula.

But when the results were released on Thursday night, Mwaiwa came third with 1,614 votes out of 6,783 ballots cast. Governor Kivutha Kibwana’s man, independent candidate Timothy Maneno, won with 2,902 votes. The candidate for the Deputy President William Ruto’s party United Democratic Alliance Daniel Musau was second with 2,219 votes. Former Machakos senator Johnson Muthama is the party chairman.

The region has 11,243 registered voters, with the turnout of 60.33 per cent.

Yesterday, Makueni Senator Mutula Kilonzo Junior attributed their defeat to betrayal from within. “The same thing will happen if we handpick the gubernatorial candidate. Some campaigned for us and slept at Savannah (a hotel belonging to one of politicians associated with independent candidate).”

The Wiper leader has called for a two-day meeting with top party leaders in Machakos on Tuesday. Sources privy to the retreat have hinted that the by-election will be top on agenda.

The contest was largely seen as a test for the political strength of Kalonzo ahead of next year’s election.

The former VP has parted ways with Governor Kibwana, who after the results were announced said they pointed to a new face in Ukambani politics.

“The people have expressed their democratic right of electing a leader of their choice and not someone imposed to them. When democracy prevails, those who feel they are famous will never triumph but only development oriented,” said Kibwana.

Maneno called on his opponents to join hands and work for the people. 

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