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Wilson Sossion: Why I’m leaving ODM

POLITICS
By Mireri Junior | October 14th 2021

ODM leader Raila Odinga (right) with former Knut secretary-general and Nominated MP Wilson Sossion at function. [File, Standard]

Nominated Member of Parliament Wilson Sossion says he has decamped to the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) Party from ODM to boost his chances of winning the Bomet senatorial seat in the 2022 General Election.

Speaking on KTN News’ News Hour show on Wednesday, October 13, Sossion said a section of the electorate in Bomet advised him to decamp to UDA if he was serious about clinching the position.

According to the former Kenya National Union of Teachers (KNUT) Secretary-General, the constituents of Bomet started urging him to enter elective politics in 2008, when the then-Bomet Member of Parliament Kipkalya Kones died in a plane crash, which also claimed the life of Sotik MP Lorna Laboso.

“I declined their pleas because I was serving teachers as a trade unionist at the time,” Sossion said.

The former KNUT boss says it’s now time to “listen to the voice of the people”.

Sossion said gunning for the seat on an Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) Party ticket would disadvantage him, as a section of the electorate told him that the popular political party in the region is UDA, which is linked to Deputy President William Ruto.

“Before settling on UDA as the political party that I wish to vie on, I consulted widely and engaged in soul-searching,” he said.

The former trade unionist said he is in talks with ODM leader Raila Odinga to ensure a smooth exit from the party, of which he is a life member.

“I will follow due process to formally move to UDA,” he said, adding that he has sought Odinga’s blessings following his decision.

Sossion was nominated to Parliament on an ODM ticket in 2017 to champion the labour movement’s interests in the National Assembly.

“It would be impossible for me to win an elective seat in Bomet on an ODM ticket. The region is 96 per cent dominated by UDA supporters,” he said.

On Sunday, October 10, Sossion announced his support for UDA and DP William Ruto’s presidential candidature in the 2022 polls.

The Nominated MP was in Ruto’s Karen residence when the DP hosted a meeting with grassroots politicians from Kigumo in Murang’a County.

Prior to his stint in the National Assembly, Sossion served as the Secretary-General of KNUT, a position he held between November 2013 and June 25, 2021, when he unceremoniously exited the union following protracted disputes with the Teachers’ Service Commission (TSC).

Between August 2017 and June 2021, he served both the National Assembly and KNUT, resulting in a section of his critics, pushing for his resignation from the union, arguing he couldn’t occupy two public service posts.

Sossion is seeking to unseat the incumbent Dr. Christopher Langat, who was first elected to Parliament in the 2017 General Election on a Jubilee Party ticket.

Langat, who got 140,396 votes (53.3 per cent), beat Kanu’s Nick Salat to the senatorial seat. Salat amassed 100,506 votes (38.2 per cent).

Prior to joining politics, Dr. Langat served as the Dean, School of Human Resources Development at the Moi University.

Between 2014 and 2015, Langat, who holds a PhD in Education (Arts), was a lecturer at the Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT).

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