Mudavadi, Wetangula Gang Up Against Ruto in Battle for Western Votes

  • A collage of Speaker Moses Wetang'ula and Prime Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi during campaigns.
    A collage of Speaker Moses Wetang'ula and Prime Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi during campaigns.
    The Standard
  • Prime Cabinet Secretary, Musalia Mudavadi, and National Assembly Speaker Moses Wetang’ula hatched strategies to shield their western Kenya backyard from further pilferage from political nemesis Raila Odinga and President William Ruto.

    The impending by-election where Ruto's United Democratic Alliance fielded a candidate against Ford Kenya informed their decision to unite in the Bungoma senatorial by-election. 

    ANC Secretary General announced that the party would back Wetang’ula’s Ford Kenya in the by-election against Ruto's UDA. 

    “We have found it decent and good manners to leave it to Wetang’ula’s team (Ford Kenya) to defend their seat,” Mr Gikuru revealed.

    Chief Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi meeting with Luhya leaders, Nov 23, 2022.
    Chief Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi meeting with Luhya leaders, Nov 23, 2022.
    Capital Group

    Interestingly, Kimilili MP Didmus Barasa, who was elected on a UDA ticket, solicited votes for Ford Kenya's Wakoli.

    Kakamega Senator Boniface Khalwale and Webuye West MP Dan Wanyama, however, have hit the ground running drumming up support for Mwambu Mabonga.

    The December 8 Bungoma senatorial by-election fronted Mudavadi and Mr Wetang’ula with an opportunity to face off with Ruto’s UDA under Kenya Kwanza Alliance.

    Raila's Azimio la Umoja backed former Kanduyi MP Wafula Wamunyinyi of Democratic Action Party-Kenya (DAP-K). The Bungoma poll will be conducted on December 8.

    During the August 9 elections, out of the 30 constituencies spread across Trans Nzoia, Kakamega, Vihiga, Bungoma and Busia counties, Raila's Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) had the highest number of MPs from the region at 15.

    Ruto’s United Democratic Alliance (UDA) had six, Ford Kenya, Amani National Congress (ANC) and DAP-K five each, Jubilee one and one independent MP.

    In a plot to win them over in a move seen by many as a 2027 political game plan, Mudavadi hosted Western Kenya MPs and leaders to consolidate his influence. 

    35 Members of Parliament attended the meeting, which comprised leaders across the political divide.

    Westland MP Tim Wanyonyi asserted that there was nothing wrong with leaders forging together for the sake of their constituents to ensure efficient service delivery to the people.

    Wanyonyi pointed out that nothing was at fault if Mudavadi was attempting to galvanize the western region.

    “Is there anything wrong with Mudavadi consolidating the region? Every politician has an ambition and if he wants to consolidate his region that is where it begins. Politics is local and if Musalia moves in that direction, we will support him,” he revealed.

    A collage of Bungoma Senatorial Aspirants from left; Wafula Wamunyinyi, Wafula Wakoli and Mwambu Mabonga.
    A collage of Bungoma Senatorial Aspirants from left; Wafula Wamunyinyi, Wafula Wakoli and Mwambu Mabonga.
    Kenyans.co.ke

    Speaker Wetang’ula, on his part, urged former Raila Odinga allies in Bungoma to align with his party Ford Kenya which formed the government.

    On Saturday, November 19, Wetang'ula received defectors from the Azimio la Umoja coalition, a move he termed as a strategy to strengthen the Ford Kenya party.

    Those who defected to the Kenya Kwanza included former Kanduyi MP and Bungoma County ODM leader Alfred Khang’ati, former Bungoma deputy governor Prof. Charles Ngome and Members of the former Bungoma County Assembly who were floored in the August polls.

    Wetang’ula stated that there was a need to make Ford Kenya firm so that he can also have the energy to engage and negotiate for bigger projects for the region. 

    “It’s you to give me support before outsiders can think of the same, let us not divide the Luhya community,” Wetang’ula expressed.