The endorsement of businessman Richard Ngatia by Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka is set to stir politics in Nairobi as the electoral battle for control of the capital shapes up.
At the same time, two other Azimio aspirants—ODM’s Tim Wanyonyi and Jubilee’s Agnes Kagure—met at Serena Hotel, Nairobi, yesterday as they sought to work together ahead of the August 9 polls. Sources close to them said they were negotiating a possible joint ticket.
And while the two refused to brief the media on the details of the meeting, the sources said Ms Kagure had reached out to Mr Wanyonyi for partnership. “Today’s (Saturday) meeting was part of negotiations that have been ongoing,” a person familiar with the talks and who attended the meeting told the Sunday Nation.
Ms Kagure, in a post on her Facebook page hours after the meeting, said her conversations with Mr Wanyonyi centred on finding ways of solving the problems bedevilling the city. “A pleasure catching up with my brother and worthy competitor, Tim Wanyonyi, who shares the same vision of a prosperous Nairobi as I do. Ours is a friendly competition of policies and agenda that aims to eventually give Nairobi residents the best leadership through our Azimio coalition. Better days are ahead my people, mazuri yaja.”
Before the Friday event at which Mr Musyoka endorsed Mr Ngatia, who promised to work with Prof. Philip Kaloki (Wiper), the president of the Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry had met with Mr Wanyonyi—ODM’s only hopeful.
“My presidential candidate, Raila, has gone on record that there will be no zoning, which means ODM is at liberty to have its candidates. If Wiper wants to field a candidate, it will, but in this case, Wiper says it will back the Jubilee candidate,” Mr Musyoka told the Sunday Nation.
“Our candidate (Prof Kaloki) announced that he is in talks with Ngatia, who was present. The day before, he met with Tim Wanyonyi, who is the ODM candidate for the governor’s seat in Nairobi. That is the spirit of open consultation,” Mr Musyoka added, insisting that there was no row with Mr Odinga over his endorsement of Mr Ngatia.
“I have no row with Raila. I endorsed him. I pronounced myself before a record crowd at Jacaranda that for a third time ‘I am saying Raila Tosha,’” he said.
Mr Ngatia will be walking to the Jubilee Party primaries set for Tuesday with a head-start following his endorsement by the Wiper leader, who promised him the Wiper and Kamba nation vote.
Also seeking the Jubilee flag is the incumbent, Anne Kananu.
Besides the four, DAP-K’s Chrispus Fwamba and Kenneth Nyamwamu of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) are other Azimio hopefuls seeking to take charge of the affairs of the capital.
Kenya Kwanza already has Senator Johnson Sakaja as its flag-bearer in the race. However, Azimio la Umoja One Kenya has been slow in building consensus and this could prove costly to the coalition party come August.
Additional reporting by Silas Apollo