Ugenya MP Ochieng, ex-governor Ranguma ditch Azimio for Kenya Kwanza
Ugenya MP David Ochieng and former Kisumu Governor Jack Ranguma have withdrawn their support for Raila Odinga's Azimio movement in favour of William Ruto's Kenya Kwanza.
The development was revealed Friday by Dr Ruto at his Karen residence, the same day Mr Odinga held a meeting with elected leaders from the western region amid a growing list of defections from the Azimio movement.
“I welcome my friend Mr Ochieng and the Movement for Democracy and Growth (MDG) party to be part of the Kenya Kwanza coalition. We have been in constant consultation and today I am happy to report that we have signed the agreement,” said Dr Ruto.
He added: “I must assure you that we shall work together and reach all the corners of the republic. It is by working together with all the leaders that we shall realise our dream as a government.”
Mr Ochieng said the MDG party’s manifesto aligns with that of the Kenya Kwanza coalition.
“We are here because we feel we are in agreement with what Kenya Kwanza stands for. I must say I am delighted by the fact that the President-elect has promised not to leave any part of the country out in his development agenda,” said Mr Ochieng.
Mr Ochieng, who is the MDG party leader, fell out with the Odinga-led ODM party and formed his own outfit in 2017. However, he joined Azimio la Umoja One Kenya coalition to defend his seat in the just concluded elections.
In the election, he beat his closest rival Dr Daniel Odhiambo of ODM by garnering a total of 25,520 votes while his closest rival managed 22,928 votes.
Mr Ochieng and Mr Ranguma are only the latest politicians to walk out of the Azimio movement after the elections. Former Mandera County Governor Ali Roba, who also owns UDM party, recently ditched Azimio for Kenya Kwanza.
Along with Mandera governor Mohamed Khalif, they were welcomed into the fold by Dr Ruto at his Karen residence last Thursday. UDM has eight MPs, two Senators and two governors.
In Parliament, 10 of the 12 independent MPs have indicated that they will be joining Dr Ruto's Kenya Kwanza movement.
Among governors, Azimio has 21 elected county bosses while Kenya Kwanza has 22.