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Siaya Gov. race: Charles Owino leaves Gumbo midway, returns to police service

Former police spokesperson Charles Owino. [File, Standard]

Former Police spokesperson Charles Owino has withdrawn his candidature as the running mate of Nicholas Gumbo in the Siaya governor’s race.

The two were running on the United Democratic Movement (UDM) Party.

The Secretary-General of UDM, David Ohito, said IEBC has given the party 24 hours to pick a new running mate.

“UDM Party has received and accepted Charles Owino’s withdrawal as the running mate of Nicholas Gumbo in the Siaya gubernatorial contest,” Ohito told The Standard.

The Standard understands that Owino, who resigned as police spokesperson in mid-2021, is making a return to the Police Service.

He will serve as the Director of the Kenya National Focal Point on Small Arms and Light Weapons.

The Inspector-General of Police Hillary Mutyambai asked Owino to accept or reject his new posting within seven days, starting Monday this week.

Owino was the small arms and light weapons agency’s deputy director before leaving to venture into politics.

The former police spokesperson quit the Police Service to run for Siaya governor’s seat on ODM ticket, but failed to secure the backing of the party’s leadership, prompting him to quit ODM in March 2022.

Later that month, he dropped his gubernatorial bid and accepted to deputise former Rarieda MP Nicholas Gumbo.

Last week, Senator James Orengo of ODM, who is Gumbo’s fiercest competitor in the race to succeed Cornel Rasanga as Siaya Governor, picked William Oduol as his running mate.