The Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party has endorsed Wiper Democratic Movement’s candidate Agnes Kavindu for Machakos Senator seat in a by-election slated for March 18.
This comes a day after the Machakos branch leadership announced support for Maendeleo Chap Chap’s candidate John Katuku, raising serious questions on whether the leaders had consulted the national leadership.
In a statement on Friday afternoon, the party said the decision to support Wiper’s candidate was informed by previous cooperation including the 2017 National Super Alliance (NASA) coalition where the party’s boss Kalonzo Musyoka supported ODM leader Raila Odinga for presidency.
ODM added that the party also considered the fact that Ms Kavindu was a member of the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) Steering Committee, a product of the handshake between Raila and President Uhuru Kenyatta.
“In the spirit of NASA and BBI, we SHALL rally our support to the Wiper Party candidate Ms. Agnes Kavindu to become the next Senator of Machakos County. Ms. Kavindu was a member of the BBI Steering Committee that came up with the Bill before the Counties, ” ODM said in a statement.
MACHAKOS BY-ELECTION: In the spirit of NASA and BBI, we SHALL rally our support to the Wiper Party candidate Ms. Agnes Kavindu to become the next Senator of Machakos County. Ms. Kavindu was a member of the BBI Steering Committee that came up with the Bill before the Counties.
— The ODM Party (@TheODMparty) January 29, 2021
The latest declaration overrules Machakos County’s ODM branch chairman Peter Mutuku’s previous statement.
Mutuku declared support for Katuku on Thursday after a meeting with the party’s County leadership comprising of Branch Chairpersons from all the regions eight branches of Masinga, Yatta, Mwala, Kathiani, Kangundo,Matungulu, Machakos Town and Mavoko.
He said the decision was informed by the good working relationship with the Machakos Governor Alfred Mutua’s party.
“Today at our ODM County Office the Maendeleo Chap Chap team has visited our office, in Machakos County, to honour their visit, we have resolved that ODM Machakos County and its members will support their candidate while still in our party hence that we are not defecting from our party. Just making a good working relationship. Our relationship will be valid even after the by-election, ” Mutuku announced.
The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) this week cleared 11 candidates to contest for the seat in the election seen as a supremacy battle between region’s Kingpin Kalonzo Musyoka and Johnson Muthama, who is the Chairman of the United Democratic Alliance (UDA).
Kavindu’s is Muthama’s ex-wife.
UDA has fronted Urbanus Mutunga Muthama in the race to succeed Senator Boniface Kabaka who passed on in December last year. The first time lawmaker was elected senator in 2017 on a Chama Cha Uzalendo (CCU) party ticket.
Other candidates cleared by IEBC to contest include Stanley Masai Muindi (Party of Economic Democracy), Lily Nduku Nwanzia of CCU and Jonathan Makenzi Maweu (Independent Candidate).
Others include Munyambu Francis Musembi (Independent), Nthama Sebastian Nzau (Independent), Kitheka Simeon Kioko (Grand Dream Development Party), Musingi John Kioko (Muungano Party) and Otto Edward Musembi Nthenge of FORD-ASILI.