Raila announces Azimio One Kenya Nairobi team

 Raila Odinga

Azimio la Umoja One Kenya coalition flagbearer Raila Odinga.

Photo credit: Justus Ochieng | Nation Media Group

Former Nairobi deputy governor Polycarp Igathe will fly the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition party ticket in the Nairobi governor’s race.

Mr Igathe was unveiled as a candidate in a meeting chaired by ODM leader Raila Odinga and his Wiper counterpart Kalonzo Musyoka.

The former Equity Bank chief commercial officer will be deputised by former Kibwezi MP Phillip Kaloki, while Westlands MP Tim Wanyonyi will now defend his seat in the August 9 elections.

Announcing the deal reached after an hour-long meeting in Nairobi on Friday, Mr Odinga said the coalition had also settled on ODM secretary-general Edwin Sifuna to run for the Nairobi Senate seat.

Nairobi Woman Representative Esther Passaris will also defend her seat on an Azimio ticket.

Mr Odinga said the deal had been reached after wider consultations among the coalition partners, ending weeks of speculation on their choice for the Nairobi race.

“We have today held a meeting of the Azimio council and after consultations have concluded that Polycarp Igathe will be our governor candidate in Nairobi and he will be deputised by Prof Phillip Kaloki,” Mr Odinga said.

“We also want to announce that Tim Wanyonyi has agreed to step down from the seat and will defend his seat as MP Westlands.”

He added that Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Richard Ngatia had also dropped out of the governorship race.

Mr Ngatia was instead appointed a presidential special envoy on trade.

The ODM leader said the meeting had also resolved that the Nairobi County Assembly Speaker’s position be given to the party.

“We have also agreed that Azimio will field candidates in all the other seats in the county of Nairobi, and the 17 constituencies,” Mr Odinga said.

The Friday deal now ends a deadlock that had gripped the coalition over the Nairobi governorship contest involving Mr Wanyonyi, Mr Ngatia Mr Igathe.

A late entrant into the race, Mr Igathe’s name was said to have been fronted by President Uhuru Kenyatta as part of a deal in the Azimio coalition that would see Jubilee field a candidate for Nairobi governor.

Mr Igathe was to be deputised by Mr Wanyonyi, while Wiper was to get the county assembly Speaker’s position, according to earlier reports on the deal signed between the coalition parties on Thursday.

But Mr Wanyonyi had vowed to stay in the race for governor, insisting that he would not play second fiddle in the contest for the city’s top seat.

Azimio One Kenya Nairobi team