Nairobi Governor race: I learnt of Polycarp Igathe candidature on social media, says Richard Ngatia

Businessman Richard Ngatia maintains he is still in the race for Nairobi Governor. [File, Standard]

Richard Ngatia, who is seeking Nairobi Governor seat on Jubilee Party ticket, maintains he is still in the race, even as Polycarp Igathe insists he’s the chosen one.

It is reported Igathe’s candidature is being fronted by President Uhuru Kenyatta, the Party leader of Jubilee.

In an interview on Spice FM on Wednesday, April 20, Igathe said Kenyatta was keen on who runs Nairobi as governor.

Ngatia had mounted an expensive campaign, erecting billboards on nearly all major roads in Nairobi.

He now says he was equally shocked to learn of Igathe’s candidature through social media.

“I learnt about Polycarp Igathe vying [for Nairobi governor’s seat] on social media. Later, TV aired the same report. I have not been informed of his said-endorsement by President Kenyatta. The Head of State has also not asked me to bow out of the race,” said Ngatia during an interview on Kameme Television on Wednesday night, April 20.

Ngatia says he’s invested heavily in popularising Azimio la Umoja over the last four months, and that it’s only fair if he is rewarded with the Jubilee Party ticket.

“I took a chance on Jubilee Party at a time when it was politically dead. No one wanted to run for an elective seat on Jubilee,” he said.

Ngatia also responded to speculation that he could be locked out of the governor’s race because he “lacks a university degree”.

“The Commission for University Education has validated my bachelor’s degree,” he said, claiming those alleging that he doesn’t have university education “are out to soil my reputation”.

He also denied allegations that he has a shady business reputation.

Ngatia says President Kenyatta has been imploring upon him, Agnes Kagure and Ann Kananu to mutually agree on who is better-placed to run for city governor.

“Jubilee is also looking at opinion polls to determine who among Kagure, Kananu and I is best-suited to win the governor’s seat,” he said.

In the Spice FM interview on Wednesday, Igathe said his two-week consultations with the mwananchi made it clear to him that he was needed at the helm of city politics.

Until Tuesday, April 19, no one had imagined that Igathe would nutmeg Richard Ngatia for the Jubilee Party ticket.