Kirinyaga Women Representative, Wangui Ngirici has reacted to Governor Anne Waiguru’s shift to Deputy President William Ruto’s United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party.
Earlier today, Waiguru together with 25 Members of Kirinyaga County Assembly visited the DP’s Karen residence from where her defection from the ruling Jubilee Party was publicised.
In an exclusive interview with The Standard, Ngirici (DP’s longtime supporter in the county) welcomed Waiguru to their party, saying she didn’t mind competition.
“I think it is good to have competition. If you don't compete, how do you know your strengths? But I have seen things on the ground and I know nothing is going to change,” she said in a phone interview.
When asked whether she felt betrayed by Waiguru’s arrival at the party despite her unwavering support for Ruto, she was quick to note that she had advance information on the defection.
“I don’t feel betrayed. This is because the DP actually informed me about the meeting yesterday. He even invited me to come but I couldn’t make it because I was in Mombasa,” she responded.
She added: “I wish them well and I will continue to focus on my responsibilities as a lawmaker in Kirinyaga County,”.
Since Ngirici had declared her interest in the county's top seat on a UDA ticket, she said she was ready to face her competitor in the party primaries ahead of 2022 polls.
"Now that they are here, we will go and face each other in the party nominations because I fear no one. The people of Kirinyaga come first," she told a crowd hours after Waiguru defected.
Today Governor Waiguru's communication confirmed her move to UDA after meeting the DP at his official residence in Nairobi.
“I have asked if it is betrayal if I moved? But the message I have gotten is that you must be careful to stay relevant in politics. The people are the ones who decide for you. When they decide you stand, you will do it. And the people of Kirinyaga have spoken,” she noted.
In September, she had hinted at seeking re-election on a UDA ticket after a roadside gathering she was addressing in Mwea promised to re-elect her if she vied on a UDA ticket.
“Which political party do you want me to seek re-election on?", to which the majority chanted "UDA".
However, pundits say her defection introduces a political battle between her and Ngirici, who had long expressed interest in vying for the governor seat on a UDA ticket.