Orange Democratic Movement party leader Raila Odinga says the party will not hand anyone a direct nomination in the Kibra Constituency by-election slated for November 7th.
The opposition leader says every candidate will have to fight it out with other contestants in the August 31st party primaries ahead of the by-election meant to replace the late MP Ken Okoth.
Odinga made the announcement on Sunday at a rally in Kibra in which he also revealed that at least 26 aspirants will battle it out for the party ticket.
Today we unveiled our aspirants for the Kibra Constituency seat at a rally at Kamkunji grounds which was graced by the PL @RailaOdinga & other top party officials. It was a rare opportunity for the aspirants to jointly sell their policies as we prepare for primaries #MbelePamoja pic.twitter.com/EXUTht0ZFVGet breaking news on your Mobile as-it-happens. SMS ‘NEWS’ to 20153
— The ODM Party (@TheODMparty) August 25, 2019
Among those expected to seek the ODM ticket in the race include Benson Musungu (ODM National Youth Coordinator), Imran Okoth (late MP Ken Okoth brother and PA), Reggae DJ Kriss Darlin, Sigar Agumba, Peter Orero (Dagoretti High School Principal), and Ochieng Jera.
Former Embakasi South MP Irshad Sumra, who was earlier reported to have also been seeking the party ticket, however, said “I am not in the race” adding that “I only came because I support Kibra and I love Kibra.”
Efforts to replace the late Kibra MP Ken Okoth intensified as ODM candidates who expressed interest in the seat took the podium at the famous Kamukunji grounds in the city’s Kibra slums to market their candidature.
They each tabled their manifestos awaiting vetting by the party.
Roselyne Odinga who was also in attendance, however, opted out of the hotly contested seat.
“I will not be able to vie in Kibra, but I wanted to come here today to greet and talk to you and to say I will keep interacting with you to the end,” said Ms Odinga.
Among legislators who attended the rally included Anthony Oluoch (Mathare), Tom Kajwang (Ruaraka), George Aladwa (Makadara), Simba Arati (Dagoretti North) and Esther Passaris (Nairobi Woman Rep.)
Odinga took the chance to popularize the building bridges initiative saying it remains the best bet to provide a clear road map for the country.
The Kibra MP seat fell vacant after MP Ken Okoth succumbed to cancer on July 26, 2019.