The beginning of singer Bahati's journey to politics has been hapless and the Mathare parliamentary hopeful seems to have run out of luck.
During a joint delegates meeting of ODM and Jubilee on Monday, ODM Secretary General Edwin Sifuna said the Azimio One Kenya Coalition settled on Anthony Aluoch as their preferred candidate to fly the Mathare flag.
However, Sifuna said that Bahati, who was seeking the seat under a Jubilee ticket, will be offered a job in the Azimio One Kenya should they win the August polls.
"Zoning was done perfectly; even here in Mathare, we have agreed that it is an ODM zone. We only have one candidate in Mathare and that is Anthony Oluoch, this young man called Bahati is my younger brother and we will talk. I will make sure that we find him another position within the Azimio government," said Sifuna.
In addition, the Ministry of Public Service, Youth And Gender Affairs Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS) Rachel Shebesh also asked Bahati to give up the Mathare seat.
- Sifuna and Alai clash during Azimio's city rally
- Don't cry, Bahati, that's just politics and you are not the lucky candidate
- Bahati tena!
- Four players land sports scholarships in US universities
Shebesh told Bahati to shelve his political ambitions like Westlands MP Tim Wanyonyi, who dropped from the Nairobi gubernatorial race to pave the way for Polycarp Igathe.
"We have talked with Bahati several times asking him to work with us in the larger government. Bahati, you are not even at the level of Tim Wanyonyi, who dropped his bid to be Nairobi governor," said Shebesh.
Appalled by the news, Bahati took to his social media platforms to refute the claims that he had agreed to step down from the race.
"Dear Azimio, stop misleading the voters of Mathare. Bahati has not stepped down for anyone, "wrote Bahati.
The latest came three weeks after the Independence Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) cleared the singer to vie for the Mathare Constituency seat.
"Finally cleared by the IEBC. Thank you, God, thank you Jubilee Party, thank you Mathare for entrusting me with this opportunity to bring the change we have been longing for," said Bahati.
However, this is not the first time that Bahati has been asked to step down in favour of Aluoch for the Mathare seat. In April, the musician-turned politician cried while addressing the media, saying his nomination certificate had been recalled to pave the way for the incumbent Mathare MP.
"I know there is zoning in politics. Mathare has been zoned as an ODM area. For this one time, let us give the youth of this country and the Azimio la Umoja a chance," Bahati said amid tears.
"Give the people of Mathare a chance to get the leader they have always wanted. These people of Mathare have suffered. I did not come to politics to get a job because I already had one. They deserve someone who understands them, "said Bahati.
The gospel-turned-secular artiste reminded the leaders of his political formation (President Uhuru Kenyatta and Raila Odinga) of how he has been loyal to the Jubilee Party.
“I respect Raila and Uhuru. I am a big supporter of Azimio and Jubilee. I did over 555 stops campaigning for the president across the country. Please do not kill the hearts of the youths in Azimio," said Bahati.
Speaking to Standard Entertainment, Bahati said that the current Mathare MP was the man behind his woes.
"Truth be told, the sitting MP has done nothing for his constituents and based on the influence I got among the youth he decided to play high-handedness in the whole matter," he said.
"At the just concluded party primaries, I emerged the winner flooring all other candidates and Kenyans witnessed my win. Even the opinion polls showed I was the force this time around. Yeye mwenyewe anajua tukienda head to head ataenda Nyumbani,” said Bahati.
Bahati, who has been vocal about his wishes to represent the people of Mathare, said he understands the plight of his people, having been born and raised in the area.
"Mathare is where I was born and raised, it is the place that made me who I am. We have been wanting and crying for change. If I can do something to better the lives of people in Mathare, why not go for it. Mathare people are going through the same problems I went through more than 20 years ago," said Bahati.