Elders endorse journalist Eric Obino for Nyaribari Chache MP’s seat

Eric Obino

Veteran journalist Eric Obino (seated) after being installed as an elder at his Bobaracho home in Kisii on January 21, 2021. He was endorsed by Nyaribari clan elders to vie for the Nyaribari Chache parliamentary seat. 

Photo credit: Ondari Ogega | Nation Media Group

Veteran journalist Eric Obino was on Friday endorsed by Nyaribari clan elders to vie for Nyaribari Chache parliamentary seat in Kisii County.

The journalist, who has declared his interest for the parliamentary seat now has the elder's blessings to hunt for votes across the constituency.

Mr Obino underwent traditional rights led by clan elders, a ceremony that also admitted him into the Nyaribari elders’ council. Elders dressed him in traditional regalia as they prayed for him. The ceremony was marked by traditional and contemporary prayers, song and dance.

The crowning ceremony was followed by speeches from constituency leaders representing various groups.

 Religious leaders, minority communities’ representatives, youth, women groups, boda boda operators, traders and many other groups were present.

Blessings

"I am honoured to receive your blessings today. It's a new dawn and I promise to bring the much needed change in Nyaribari Chache if elected," said Mr Obino.

Mr Obino's candidature is a threat to the current MP Richard Tong'i who has been getting a lot of support from the Bobaracho Ward where Mr Obino comes from.

Mr Tong'i is serving his second term.

The ward comprises a big percentage of people from Kisii Town, most of whom Mr Obino has had a long personal relationship with.

In addition, Mr Obino's rural home is within Kisii Municipality, making it easy for him to connect with many of the voters in the town. Mr Obino said his focus is to work with all residents.

The veteran journalist said he will prioritise the constituency boundary problem and exclusion of locals from devolved government jobs.

 “We must re-examine the boundary matter and correct past mistakes. It is the work of the MP to safeguard constituency boundaries,” he said.

Bad roads and access to clean water also rank highly in his manifesto.

“All parts of the constituency must benefit from the little resources available,” he said.

Others lining up for the parliamentary position are businessman Mr Zaheer Jhanda, former Kenya Pipeline chairman James Kenani and Kiogoro Ward Representative Samuel Apolo.

Mr Obino hopes to secure the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) ticket.

“I am confident the party primaries will be free and fair,” Mr Obino, 54, said.

Mr Obino is the Editor-In Chief in charge of print at Mediamax Group. He was with the Nation Media Group from 1992 to 2018, rising to the position of Executive Editor.

He says his focus is youth and education, economic empowerment of Nyaribari Chache residents and equity and transparency in the sharing of resources at constituency level.

Those who spoke asked him to focus on helping the elderly get National Hospital Insurance Fund cards, and bring about friendly conditions for the local entrepreneurs.  

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