I’m not anti-Kipsigis, Kenta says as he campaigns in Emurua Dikirr

Azimio Narok governor candidate Moitalel Ole Kenta

Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Narok governor candidate Moitalel Ole Kenta. While campaigning in Emurua Dikirr, he asked residents to stick to their preferred presidential candidate, DP William Ruto, but vote for him as governor.

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Narok governor candidate Moitalel Ole Kenta had to abandon campaigning for the coalition’s presidential flagbearer Raila Odinga over the weekend after facing a hostile crowd in Emurua Dikirr constituency.

The Narok North MP, while campaigning in Chebitoik, asked residents to stick to their preferred presidential candidate, Deputy President William Ruto, but vote for him as governor.

The announcement in the area perceived to be Dr Ruto's stronghold was received with cheers and applause from residents.

Residents, who are mostly from the Kipsigis community, pledged to support his bid for governor but maintained that their support for DP Ruto was unwavering.

‘Kenta-Ruto’ chants

The locals started chanting "Kenta-Ruto", forcing the MP to heed their demands and endorse the slogan while maintaining that he was solidly in ODM.

Mr Kenta beseeched locals to support his bid, saying that he did not mind whoever they vote for as President.

“I am in ODM and I know you're UDA people. When it comes to President, I am not telling you to vote for the ODM candidate but just vote your person for President," said Mr Kenta.

He told the Kipsigis community not to respect their Maasai counterparts who are supporting Mr Odinga.

Mr Kenta made a daring invasion of the Kipsigis-inhabited Emurua Dikirr constituency on Sunday in his bid to shed the tribal tag that his opponents had given him.

Not anti-Kipsigis

He attended a church service at Chebitoik Deliverance Church and later addressed a political rally at a local trading centre. He affirmed that he was not anti-Kipsigis as he had previously been portrayed.

"I am your leader and you (Kipsigis) are my people. I have come here today for you to see that I am just as human as you. I want to assure you that I will be a governor for all," Mr Kenta said.

He is battling it out with UDA candidate Patrick Ntutu, who has endeared himself to the Kipsigis community due to his closeness with DP Ruto.

Mr Ntutu has been assuring residents that his Kenya Kwanza team is inclusive and that his opponents are tribal.

Mr Kenta picked fellow tribesman William Oltetia as his running mate.

The Narok North MP defended his choice of deputy governor, saying the move did not mean that he detests other communities but was meant to ensure that the Maasai community were at the helm of their county's leadership.

Mau forest evictions

On recent Maasai Mau forest evictions, Mr Kenta reiterated that there were cartels who had duped the settlers into buying government forest.

"Right from the word go, some known land merchants defrauded settlers into buying 'air' in the name of land. I will ensure that those cartels are brought to book," said Mr Kenta.

He also assured the Kipsigis that he would not evict them as his opponents were saying.

"I have been MP for Narok North, which covers cosmopolitan Narok town, and no one has been evicted," said Mr Kenta.

Reject six-piece voting

Some of the local leaders who attended the event vowed to reject the six-piece-suit voting pattern advocated by DP Ruto's UDA.

"Buying a suit is very expensive. As the Kipsigis in Narok, we are going for mix and match. At the top we will vote for DP Ruto for President but [for other positions] we shall vote our choice. We are voting Mr Kenta," said Mr Joseph Barusei, a former Ilmootiok ward MCA.

Mr Kenta has also vowed to sack all ghost workers and ensure that bona fide Narok residents get jobs in his government.

Both Mr Kenta and Mr Ntutu hail from the populous Purko clan of the Maasai community.


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