Campaign tracker: What you need to know about the Kenya election as at July 27

Agano Party Presidential candidate David Mwaure Waihiga during the Presidential Debate at CUEA.

Agano Party Presidential candidate David Mwaure Waihiga during the Presidential Debate at the Catholic University of East Africa on July 26, 2022.

Photo credit: Sila Kiplagat | Nation Media Group

The Kenya Kwanza presidential candidate, Deputy President William Ruto, attended the much-anticipated debate on Tuesday night solo and got to explain how much wealth is actually enough.

Azimio la Umoja One Kenya coalition presidential flagbearer Raila Odinga gave the debate a wide berth, with the Roots Party leader, Prof George Wajackoyah, arriving at the debate venue only to storm out minutes later, leaving his Agano party counterpart Wahiga Mwaure to debate solo.

Here is all you need to know about Kenya’s politics as of July 27

DP Ruto speaks on his wealth in solo presidential debate

DP Ruto on Tuesday night was the only participant in the presidential debate that was supposed to include his arch-rival, Azimio’s Mr Odinga, who gave the event a wide berth.

Speaking on public perceptions that he has ill-gotten wealth, DP Ruto said he is not corrupt, citing the rule of presumption of innocence and that he can stand up to scrutiny.

“I am probably the only politician who has been audited in Kenya, left right, upside down, inside out on any matter. Maybe because I have raised my head beyond what many people think I should. If I was a quiet businessperson, I’m sure I would not have attracted the kind of labelling I have been subjected to,” he said.

He was then asked by moderator Eric Latiff of KTN News and Spice FM on how much is enough in terms of wealth.

“Enough is enough,” Dr Ruto said, with his efforts to stifle a long chuckle failing as he laughed heartily alongside the crowd over his response to the question.

DP Ruto also vowed to accept the outcome of the elections.

“Accepting the outcome of the election includes going to court, if you have an issue with the results. You say my competitor has won, and I have a doubt and I go to court,” he said.

“Why I made that deliberate statement is because in Kenya, after every other election, we foment a crisis around refusing to accept the outcome of an election. It has cost us lives, property and many other things.”

Mwaure debates alone as Wajackoyah leaves CUEA minutes after arriving

Agano party presidential candidate David Mwaure debated alone during the presidential debate on Tuesday evening after his Roots party counterpart, Prof George Wajackoyah, walked out.

Prof Wajackoyah had demanded to have all the four candidates, including Mr Odinga (Azimio), DP Ruto (United Democratic Alliance), debate on the same podium, dismissing the organisers’ guidelines that divided it into two tiers.

Prof Wacjakoyah was paired with Mr Mwaure for having less than five per cent popularity in recent polls, while DP Ruto was to debate Mr Odinga because they are more popular, according to the same polls.

"The media must be fair and stop this bias. I will not take part unless I am on the same podium with all the candidates,” Prof Wajackoyah said before he walked out of Catholic University, the venue of the debate in Karen, Nairobi. 

Njuri Ncheke elders endorse Raila’s presidency bid

Mr Odinga's campaign received a major boost in Meru after Njuri Ncheke elders endorsed his candidacy yesterday.

In the final leg of his presidential campaigns, Mr Odinga met the Njuri Ncheke at the Nchiru shrine, where he was adorned in traditional regalia and declared a Meru elder.

In efforts to solidify his base in the vote-rich Meru County, Mr Odinga also called for a truce between Meru Governor Kiraitu Murungi and Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya, who are key Azimio coalition politicians in the region.

At the Njuri Ncheke shrine, Mr Odinga asked the two political rivals to shake hands and work together going forward.

Mr Odinga and his running mate Martha Karua were accompanied by Cotu leader Francis Atwoli, Raphael Tuju, Peter Kenneth, Junet Mohamed and Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho.

Njuri Ncheke elders, led by Chairman Linus Kathera, declared Mr Odinga their preferred choice.

"No one has become President in this country without having received the blessings of Njuri Ncheke at this shrine. We hereby bless Mr Odinga and his running mate, Ms Karua, to become the President of Kenya and deputy respectively," said Mr Silas Gitiye, Njuri Ncheke cultural director.

Raila endorses ex-Mungiki leader’s senatorial bid for Laikipia 

Mr Odinga has brokered a deal between ex-Mungiki leader Maina Njenga and Laikipia Deputy Governor John Mwaniki that has seen the latter drop out of the Laikipia senatorial race in favour of the former.

Mr Njenga is seeking the seat under Kanu, while Mr Mwaniki was a Jubilee candidate.

Mr Odinga, who spoke in Nyahururu, said this was one way that Azimio could ensure that it fielded strong candidates in the August 9 polls.

“I will take Mr Mwaniki and work with him at the national level, while we leave Mr Njenga to contest the senatorial seat here in Laikipia,” Mr Odinga told supporters of the two in Nyahururu town.

Other candidates who have thrown their hats into the ring under parties affiliated to Azimio are Julius Mamaiyo (ODM) and former Foreign Affairs PS Mwangi Thuita (Narc-Kenya).

Former CS launches manifesto in Mandera gubernatorial bid

Former Cabinet Secretary Adan Abdullah Mohamed, alias Mohamed Jari, has launched his manifesto in his campaign for Mandera governor.

Mr Mohamed is among four candidates seeking to succeed Governor Ali Roba, whose second and last term ends in August.

He unveiled a five-point manifesto focusing on social and economic empowerment, land and urban development, energy and environment management and transparency and good governance.

He observed that Mandera is one of the counties with the highest maternal mortality rates, an indicator of the poor state of healthcare.

“We are grappling with a lack of modern and essential medical supplies and equipment [and] the emergency referral services for specialised treatment within the Mandera healthcare infrastructure are below par,” he said.

Two Kenya Kwanza leaders fight in front of Gachagua in Narok rally

A campaign rally held in Narok by Deputy President William Ruto’s running mate, Rigathi Gachagua, almost ended in disarray after two ward reps affiliated to the Kenya Kwanza alliance clashed.

The rally was halted briefly after supporters of Narok Town Ward Rep Bernard Torome (United Democratic Alliance) and those of Mr John Gatua (The Service Party) engaged in a shouting contest.

All hell broke loose when Mr Gachagua interrupted his speech and handed the microphone to Mr Torome, the majority leader in the Narok County Assembly.

When Mr Torome finished speaking, supporters of Mr Gatua demanded that he also be given the mic to address the crowd, catching the eye of Mr Gachagua.

After Mr Gachagua concluded his speech, he attempted to give the mic to Mr Gatua, but the effort was thwarted when the instrument was blocked from reaching him.

A brief fight ensued on top of the campaign truck as Mr Gatua walked away in disappointment.