The Standard Group Plc is a multi-media organization with investments in media platforms spanning newspaper print operations, television, radio broadcasting, digital and online services. The Standard Group is recognized as a leading multi-media house in Kenya with a key influence in matters of national and international interest.
  • Standard Group Plc HQ Office,
  • The Standard Group Center,Mombasa Road.
  • P.O Box 30080-00100,Nairobi, Kenya.
  • Telephone number: 0203222111, 0719012111
  • Email: [email protected]

What next after Musalia Mudavadi, Moses Wetangula fail to deliver 70pc?

 Bungoma Senator-elect Mose Wetangula and ANC party leader Musalia Mudavadi during the launch of the Kenya Kwanza education charter held at Catholic University of Eastern Africa(CUEA) in Nairobi on June 23 2022. [Esther Jeruto, Standard]

Easier said than done rings true of a pre-campaign promise party leaders Musalia Mudavadi and Moses Wetang'ula made to President-elect William Ruto.

At the height of political realignments that birthed the Kenya Kwanza and Azimio la Umoja One Kenya alliances, early this year, Wetangula's Ford-Kenya and Mudavadi's ANC threw in their lot with Ruto's UDA to form Kenya Kwanza coalition.

Many expected the duo would back ODM leader Raila Odinga, as they did in 2017. However, Mudavadi and Wetang'ula complained that Raila had reneged on a power-sharing agreement crafted under the National Super Alliance that brought together Raila (ODM), Kalonzo Musyoka (Wiper), Mudavadi and Wetang'ula.

In teaming up with UDA, ANC and Ford-K party leaders pledged to deliver at least 70 per cent of the Luhya vote to Kenya Kwanza in exchange for a 30 per cent share of government should Kenya Kwanza win the presidency.

Other parties under the Kenya Kwanza umbrella include Chama cha Kazi, Communist Party of Kenya, Devolution Party, Economic Freedom party, Farmers Party, Chama cha Mashinani, Maendeleo Chap Chap, The Service party, Tujibebe Wakenya Party and Umoja Maendeleo Party.

"We will deliver more than 70 per cent. In fact, we shall deliver 90 per cent. We have simply moved with the Luhya votes that we gave to Raila in 2017 to wherever we are," Wetang'ula said. In May, while giving his address during the Kiambu County Economic Forum, Mudavadi expressed similar sentiments.

The outcome of the elections however negated the Wetang'ula, Mudavadi promise. In Vihiga, Wilberforce Otichillo of ODM retained the governorship while Paul Otuoma (ODM) clinched the Busia governorship. Kenneth Lusaka of Ford-K took the governor's seat in Bungoma. Kakamega did not vote for governor due to errors on the ballot papers. Out of 33 constituencies that make up the four counties, Kenya Kwanza allied parties won 13.

Between them, elected Kenya Kwanza MPs delivered 276,113 votes, representing 19.92 per cent of the 1,386,015 votes cast in the four counties. What are the political implications of this result for Mudavadi and Wetang'ula?

"Failure by Mudavadi and Wetang'ula to deliver 70 per cent of the Luhya vote simply invalidates the agreement they had with Ruto. They haven't met part of their bargain. Ruto doesn't owe them as much as he promised," lawyer and political analyst Kennedy Echesa says.

Kenya Kwanza's show in Western where it pitched camp during campaigns vindicates an earlier observation by Prof Egara Kabaji of Masinde Muliro University that, "The people of Western cannot be herded like sheep. Each candidate knows he will get a share of the votes if they play their cards right."

Political Risk Analyst Dismas Mokua says securing the Western vote is a key success factor in the presidential election.

"Presidential candidates do a critical path analysis and identify key success factors. Western has been a Raila Odinga stronghold. Odinga has almost always banked on the Western Kenya vote," Mokua says.

He adds: "Musalia and Wetang'ula's move to Kenya Kwanza made Western Kenya a battleground and therefore gave William Ruto comfortable numbers from the region. That Musalia and Wetang'ula denied Odinga a 100 per cent win in Western is a key performance indicator."

The ANC and Ford-K party leaders, Mokua says, confirmed they can deny Odinga 100 per cent victory and deliver a significant vote that secures the much-needed 50+1 win margin.

Kenya Kwanza's performance in Western can partly be attributed to the emergence of DAP-K that broke away from Ford-K and ANC's loss of four formidable lieutenants to ODM. Tindi Mwale (Butere), Christopher Aseka (Khwisero), Titus Khamala (Lurambi) and Oscar Nabulindo (Matungu) defended their seats on Azimio tickets.

Mudavadi put up a show in his Vihiga backyard, securing three of the five MP seats and two in Kakamega where ODM took the lion's share.

It is a plus for Wetang'ula that he locked Azimio out of Bungoma, bagging eight of the nine constituencies.

Wetang'ula also played it safe by defending his senatorial seat.

"In the event that Kenya Kwanza does not secure a National Assembly majority, Wetang'ula will be happy at the Senate. In case of a Kenya Kwanza National Assembly majority, Wetang'ula will be the third most powerful politician in Kenya," says Mokua.

Related Topics


Similar Articles


Recommended Articles