Kisii unity caucus in quandary after poll defeat, 2 defections
On Monday, two MPs apologised to Raila Odinga announced their return to ODM: Simon Ogari of Bomachoge Chache and Kitutu Chache South’s Richard Onyonka
It is back to the drawing board for proponents of the Kisii unity caucus following the crushing defeat of their candidate in last Wednesday’s Nyacheki by-election.
The caucus has been campaigning for the Jubilee Party in Kisii county. ODM’s Naftali Nyaberi Onkoba won the poll with 2,216 votes, defeating JP candidate Maxwell Nyaanga Magoma, who got 1,173 votes.
The group’s problems have been compounded further by two ODM defectors going back to the Orange party. On Mon- day, MPs Simon Ogari of Bomachoge Chache and Kitutu Chache South’s Richard Onyonka apologised to party leader Raila Odinga and announced their return to the fold.
This was at a National Governing Council meeting in Nairobi. Senator Chris Obure and Kisii Deputy Governor Joash Maangi are the only ODM defectors left in the group.
But Kanu Bomachoge chairman Nyaboga Basweti on Tuesday termed the return of the two “inconsequential”. “After the crushing defeat in Nyacheki, they read the signs of the time and returned. The ground is clearly hostile to Jubilee,” he said.
Kitutu Chache South politician An- thony Kibagendi said the Nyacheki outcome and the return of the two signifies the death of the unity caucus.
“It clearly confirms that Kisii is an ODM stronghold. The by-election provided an acid test for Jubilee but they lost despite Obure and Bobasi MP Stephen Manoti hailing from the area,” he told the Star on the phone.
However, JP’s Albert Nyaundi said the by-election and the return of the two legislators do not mean the end of the road for the new party in Kisii.
“We don’t view Nyacheki as a loss because it has afforded us an opportunity to gauge our rival’s armoury ahead of 2017,” he said.
Former CIC chairman Charles Nyachae, Kitutu Chache South MP Richard Onyonka, Kisii Senator Chris Obure, Kitutu Chache North MP Jimmy Agwenyi and Kisii MCAs briefing medi in Nairobi after they held talks with President Uhuru Kenyatta at State House on August 4