Top Stories / Counties
Tuesday, 15 Nov 2016 16:10 EATnewsdesk@kenyafreepress.com
Aspirants for the Ainamoi parliamentary are having a field day with the seat expected to be vacant following the declaration by incumbent Benjamin Langat that he would not fight to retain his seat. The MP has announced his candidature for the Kericho gubernatorial position against Governor Paul Chepkwony.
Candidates for the positions are acting as if the seat has no bearer, and many are heaping praise on Mr Langat to massage his ego for the governorship so that he does not come back to run for the seat, in addition to courting his support for their own bids. As a result, Mr Langat has been treated mostly as a hero through this campaign season, and his campaign for governorship has gained wide support from the constituents.
Among the frontrunners for the seat include former principal of Kabianga High School Harry Langat. The former teacher has immense support throughout the constituency, in particular in Kericho surbubs such as Kipchichim where he was a teacher and among religious groups. He is also banking on the support of teachers who esteem him highly. Mr Langat’s supporters say he has a clean leadership record from the schools where he has been, from way back in the 80s when he was deputy principal of Kericho Tea Secondary School.
However, some youths are strongly opposed to his election on grounds that Parliament is not a pensioner’s job. “We cannot replace a youth (Hon. Langat) with a retiree,” said one of the boda boda riders at Kericho Green Stadium. Incidentally, two of Mr Langat’s top opponents who are driving the campaign against him are his former students: Sylvanus Maritim and Dominic Too (the latter whose abbreviated name has made many to call him Donald Trump).
Together with Mr Langat, the two alumni of Kabianga High School form the top three contenders for the seat. Then there is Isaac Kipyegon Bosuben (D.O) who has not made sufficient traction. The top female contender so far is Ann Too.
Among the issues the contenders are articulating are education, health, security, youth unemployment, the plight of tea farmers and general decline in agricultural output. The challenges of urbanization are also catching up with the constituency as the population of Kericho Town grows, with more people being pushed out of the land.
If the incumbent, Hon. Langat, found the race for the governorship tough and fell back on his seat, he would easily win it back owing to the divisions that have emerged among the candidates, who have uniformly been touting how great a leader he is.