Dreams of a 24-year-old to venture into the murky world of politics were met with unfulfilled promises and a Ksh125,000 dent.
Speaking exclusively to Kenyans.co.ke, former parliamentary seat aspirant for Narok North Constituency, Saruni Kipukel Kipeni, lamented that he was shortchanged by the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party - eight months after the August 2022 General Election.
He claimed that he was yet to receive a job offer despite spending Ksh125,000 on campaigns and being asked to step down for another candidate after nominations.
"I was a Member of Parliament aspirant (MP) in Narok North Constituency under UDA party and I campaigned for 3 years and used everything I had."
"I paid Ksh125,000 for nominations but the week prior, I was asked to step down by some party leaders from Narok county. To date, they haven't refunded the amount," he stated.
Kipukel claimed that he resorted to campaigning for party aspirants in a bid to ensure that the UDA party was resonating with the electorate on the ground.
"Now I have been dumped," were the words of Kipukel who claimed that he is yet to hear from the party officials.
"I have visited County Assembly Office 74 consecutive times trying to meet Narok Governor Patrick Ole Ntutu but I'm always turned away by some personnel. My text messages are left unanswered," he indicated.
In the race, Agnes Mantaine clinched the seat on a Jubilee ticket. She garnered 20,821 votes against Martin Kamwaro's 18,952 who ran on an independent ticket. UDA's Sadera Kirimpuoti was third with 9,248 votes.
But Kipukel's case is not an isolated one and mirrors the encounters of a number of politicians.
For instance, former Kiambu Governor Ferdinand Waititu claimed that President William Ruto and his deputy, Rigathi Gachagua alienated him after the 2022 elections.
During a past interview, he claimed that he donated his resources including funds and vehicles during campaigns but he had been forgotten ever since.
"I built some (politicians') careers and helped them win but now they don't pick my calls," he stated at the time.
After taking power in September 2022, President Ruto rewarded allies and political losers through state appointments.