- Richard Onyonka
The Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party has received a major boost after Ford Kenya deputy party leader, Richard Onyoka, defected to the orange team.
While being received by ODM party leader Raila Odinga at Chungwa house, the Kitutu Chache Member of Parliament stated that he will contest for the Kisii senatorial seat on an ODM ticket.
This comes after the legislator, who was elected on a Ford Kenya ticket, disclosed that he had tendered his resignation letter to Bungoma Senator, Moses Wetang'ula.FORD-Kenya Party Leader Moses Wetangula during a press briefing at Hermosa Gardens in Karen on Tuesday, July 20, 2021.Kenyans.co.ke
Onyoka explained that his political journey with the ODM party leader started many years ago after they were apprehended together during the Moi era.
"When Raila was being apprehended after the 1982 coup attempt, I was also apprehended. I never slept safely listening to him being walked away at night because we thought that they would finish him," Onyonka stated.
The legislator could not hide his admiration for the former premier adding that he would only retire from politics after Raila was elected president.
"This is a man I have been waiting for to become president then I can retire. We will work together with the team that is elected and we shall not defect from the party again," he assured.
On his part, Raila welcomed the Onyonka among the other defectors promising that the party would ensure that there are free and credible nominations. The party boss made the remarks after various aspirants raised concerns about preferred candidates.
Raila explained that he had made plans to ensure that the party does not lose members because of shambolic primaries. He revealed that the party decided on the 2020 nomination guidelines after a committee was formed to investigate the performance of the party in the 2017 General Election.
The party leader urged the nomination poll losers to stick with the party’s elected leaders further promising them jobs.
“We want party members to decide on their leaders. The person they choose will be our candidate. Those who have remained will not be left behind. We shall give them other jobs.
“We want the nominations to be friendly and not bring wrangles because if someone feels disgruntled they will move to our rival’s camp. We want those who have missed the nominations to remain at the party,” Raila stated.Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) leader Raila Odinga in Kwale County on November 16, 2021.Courtesy Raila Odinga Twitter
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