Ford Kenya leader Moses Wetangula has reiterated that his party must recapture Kabuchai parliamentary seat in Thursday’s by-election if he ought to be taken seriously in Kenyan politics.
The Bungoma Senator noted that the mini-poll occasioned by the demise of former two-time legislator James Lusweti who was a member of the Lion outfit remains a litmus test especially to his hold on Western Kenya politics, especially amongst the Bukusu.
“There is no doubt that the outcome of this by-election has a direct bearing on my standing among colleagues in the country at the level at which I operate.” He said after casting his vote for the party candidate Kalasinga Majimbo at Namakhele polling station.
Wetangula is not oblivious of this fact. He appears fully aware that the stakes are so high that he cannot afford to slip, albeit it being a by-election with changing dynamics. This, he says, is the reason why in the last couple of days, he has been crisscrossing the constituency to mobilize support for Majimbo.
“We are conscious about this issue and we are conscious that (losing) will not be allowed to happen. If I lose a seat in my own home, certainly it will be a blot on my political career and political image.” He said
The Bungoma Senator is however expressing confidence that he will emerge victorious with his candidate trouncing rivals, particularly main challenger Evans Kakai of UDA, a party associated with Deputy President William Ruto.
“My standing among my peers must be reflected by my ability to marshal my primary support in my primary constituency so that they can be able in the manner that I desire, not by us but by our people.” He remarked.
“We are very confident that our candidate has together with the party and all our supporters carried out intense, deep and far-reaching campaigns that are likely going to yield positive results.” He said
He also remains optimistic that his party’s fortunes in the region will improve after the mini poll.
Adopting a Candidate
At the same time, Wetangula has said the decision by friendly parties namely KANU, Wiper and ANC to field a single candidate in Thursday’s by-elections will be a gamechanger.
In the mini polls, ANC has fielded a candidate in Matungu constituency with the support of Ford Kenya, Wiper, KANU and ANC with Gideon Moi (KANU), Musalia Mudavadi (ANC), and Kalonzo Musyoka (Wiper) backing Wetangula’s candidate in Kabuchai.
This according to Wetangula is a major step in the direction of galvanizing the unity of the people of Western Kenya.
“I have no doubt that ANC will perform well in Matungu and we will perform well here (Kabuchai). The catalytic effect is that it draws us closer to each other in the pursuance of the unity of the region and in furtherance of our desire to have a united front in 2022.” He said
Wetangula has however claimed that UDA whose leaders are allied to Deputy President William Ruto has been out to ensure his party loses the seat. According to the lawmaker, the party stalwarts are doing everything including trying to bribe the voters so as to shift their support to Kakai, the UDA candidate.
“We have been informed from various commands posts of cases of voter bribery by UDA leaning MPs. MPs who were exported here are roaming around with sachets of money. Some of the MPs are from this region others are from elsewhere.” He claimed.
“The MPs are openly hawking money to voters.’’ He said
The polls close at 5PM and tallying will commence almost immediately. The results are expected before midnight, a time by which Wetangula will have known whether his political star will be dimmed or not in his own political home tuff.