May 26th 2017

Top Stories / 2017 Elections

With DP Ruto neutral, Kericho governor's race hots up

Local political observers expect the race to tighten given indications from DP Ruto that he would remain neutral in the race. The Ainamoi MP's campaign received a boost in recent months when speculation was rife that he was the DP's favourite candidate.

By Free Press Correspondentnewsdesk@kenyafreepress.comSunday, 02 Oct 2016 19:12 EAT

Governor Chepkwony confers with businessmen at the Brooke Bond event.

Campaigns for the 2017 Kericho gubernatorial race has started in earnest with nearly a year still to go before the elections. While it was initially thought that deputy president William Ruto would back current Ainamoi MP Benjamin Lagat for the position, recent events indicate an open contest for all the aspirants.

Hon. Lagat has been marshalling support for his expected run in the various constituencies for months though he is yet to launch his campaigns officially. Similarly, the incumbent Prof. Paul Chepkwony has heightened his political activities, including the distribution of bursary funds to schools over the past two weeks.

The governor is currently visiting the U.K., where today he was hosted as a special guest at the 12th Reunion of Brooke Bond held at the Crowne Plaza, Caversham, Reading. At the event, which was graced by business leaders from India, Canada, Sri Lanka and the USA where Brooke Bond operates, the governor appealed for international tea dealers to support the establishment of the Kericho Tea Auction.

Back in Kericho, the latest entrant in the race, Eng. Fred Kirui, held a major campaign event when he led a fundraising for the Chepseon Full Gospel Church. The area MP Hon Joseph Limo hosted the aspirant. The cabinet secretary for Energy, Charles Keter, who is a key ally of the deputy president, had only nice words to say about the aspirant.

Local political observers expect the race to tighten given indications from DP Ruto that he would remain neutral in the race. The Ainamoi MP's campaign received a boost in recent months when speculation was rife that he was the DP's favourite candidate.

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