How Dr Lilian Gogo survived one-term MP jinx

Rangwe MP Dr Lilian Gogo has broken history in the region to be one who has survived the jinx of one term MP.

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • Rangwe MP Dr Lilian Gogo has broken history in the region to be one who has survived the jinx of one term MP.
  • She came back to Parliament by playing the ODM politics, which dominates the region.
  • During her first term, she invested in education with the number of those who got bursaries increasing.

Rangwe MP Dr Lilian Gogo’s political life is the true definition of a fighter.

When she joined politics in 2017, fresh from Egerton University where she was a food safety lecturer, many people underestimated her.  She, however, went ahead and trounced several men in the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) primaries then.

With a constituency known for electing legislators for just one term, those who were defeated by Dr Gogo reverted to ‘one-term MP’ mode as consolation, not knowing the MP had mastered the political dynamics of an area, which had never produced a woman MP.

Popularly known as ‘Alily Panadol’, loosely translated as a panacea to woes facing her constituents, Dr Gogo has broken history in the region to be one who has survived the jinx of one term MP.

Rangwe Constituency has traditionally not had an MP re-elected for two consecutive terms since the multi-party system was adopted in 1992.

Dr Gogo has broken two aspects - re-election history, and beating three men in the race.

In the last election, she best learned how best to survive in politics. She came back to Parliament by playing the ODM politics, which dominates the region.

Being loyal to the political party that sponsored one to parliament and listening to wise counsel.

“I will stick to Baba even if it means my end,” Dr Gogo told Nation.Africa.

Joseph Ouma Muga won the seat when the constituency was first created for the 1988 election. He later lost to Ray Ndong’ in the 1990 election under the one-party state of Kanu. The late Prof Muga recaptured the seat in the 1992, but lost to Dr Shem Ochuodho in 1997.

In the 2002 election, Dr Ochuodho lost to Philip Okundi, who would later be dethroned by Martin Ogindo in the 2007 poll.

In 2013, Mr Ogindo lost to George Oner before Dr Gogo took over in the 2017, becoming the first female MP in the area.

The three men - Mr Oner, Dr Erick Komollo and William Omburo Odaje, were disgruntled in the manner in which the incumbent was given a direct ticket by Raila-led party. Dr Gogo, on the other hand, banked on her performance in the last five years to be re-elected.

The constituency has four wards that include Kochia, Kagan, Gem East and West. Dr Gogo comes from Gem East, the two Gem wards had never produced an MP since the invention of multi-partyism.

Upper hand

Becoming the first MP from an area which has never gotten one became a game changer for the community as far as the politics of Rangwe Constituency are concerned.

The two wards, East and West Gem, have 13,448 and 12,456 votes respectively, giving them collectively an upper hand over Kochia with 16,982 votes and Kagan with 16,000 votes.

During her term, Dr Gogo invested in education where the number of those who got bursaries increased. She also did a facelift on many schools and bought school buses for many secondary schools within.

Dr Gogo used the National Constituency Development funds (NCDF) to buy and equip one school each in the 17 locations, with a school bus.

“My electorate knows that I am no pushover; I say what I do and do what I say. In the past five years, I have achieved so much for them as per my 2017 manifesto. The major one has been getting 85 per cent of the youth and women to access devolved funds,” she said recently.

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