October 20th 2017

Top Stories / Counties

Nyamira Jubilee women rep aspirants walk out of party meeting after rival imposed

On Sunday, Mr Kiangoi is reported to have summoned elders to tell them that deputy president William Ruto had settled on the candidature of Ms Momanyi and that the other two should drop out because there won't be any nomination.

By Free Press Correspondentnewsdesk@kenyafreepress.comTuesday, 11 Apr 2017 16:02 EAT

Mr Nyambati with Nyamira County Assembly speaker Joash Nyamoko during the launch of the Nyamira party office.

A meeting called by the Nyamira Jubilee Party officials yesterday ended prematurely after two aspirants for the women representative position refused to endorse a rival who had been chosen by the local party functionaries as the one to carry Jubilee's flag.

The meeting which was supposed to bring together all Jubilee Party aspirants from the county had been called by Mr Joseph Kiangoi, who is the party's candidate for the Nyamira senatorial seat, and it was intended to discuss party nominations. However, after differences emerged, organisers changed the agenda to discuss political rallies.

But even on that there could be no consensus, so the meeting agreed to suspend all rallies to after April 21 when the party shall have conducted nominations. The two aspirants, Catherine Nyamato and Josephine Nyarera, walked out of the meeting after Mr Kiangoi indicated that they should step down for Ms Jerusa Momanyi, whom the duo always suspected to enjoy the patronage of local party officials.

Sources close to the two women told the Kenya Free Press that they were subjected to ridicule in a meeting that was for aspirants but in which the majority in attendance turned out not to be aspirants. "This forced them to leave the meeting prematurely joining a group of MCA aspirants, mainly from Borabu," said a source.

The aspiring MCAs issued a statement concerning the women representative position in which they demanded that that the position be reserved for Borabu, in accordance with a local power-sharing pact.

The Nyamira Jubilee leaders have faced censure for the undemocratic way they are selecting candidates. Their choice of former MP Walter Nyambati as the gubernatorial candidate led two popular candidates to quit the party last month, joining PNU and Maendeleo Chap Chap party.

Among the grounds used to protest Ms Momanyi's appointment is that she comes from the same village and ward with Mr Nyambati, the presumptive gubernatorial candidate. However, as this was bound to be controversial, they have been using intimidation tactics to force the other Ms Nyamato and Ms Nyarera to drop out of the race. 

On Sunday, Mr Kiangoi is reported to have summoned elders to tell them that deputy president William Ruto had settled on the candidature of Ms Momanyi and that the other two should drop out because there won't be any nomination.

Subsequent to that, some Jubilee leaders made calls to the two women to inform them that Ms Momanyi was the presumptive candidate and the deal is done. "These are the tricks they used to push out Charles Mochama and Dr Erneo Nyakiba," said a party official who wished not to be named, referencing two gubernatorial aspirants who quit the party after Mr Nyambati was endorsed as Jubilee candidate.

According to a well placed source, the women aspirants are intending to appeal to deputy president William Ruto, whose name the local officials have used in their campaign to hand the ticket to Ms Momanyi. During his tour of Kisii and Nyamira counties, President Uhuru Kenyatta assured that the party had no favoured candidate and that all aspirants will have to go through competitive nomination.

Other Jubilee aspirants have also accused the Nyamira County officials of corruption. Last month, Advocate Charles Mongare Ongoto, who is contesting the West Mugirango parliamentary seat, accused local party leaders of corruption, revealing to journalists that an official he identified had approached him seeking a bribe in exchange for automatic nomination.

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