When the 62,386 registered voters of Matungu Constituency, Kakamega County, will be casting their ballot today, they will not only be voting for their MP but also settling a score.
In the spirit of the ‘moribund’ National Super Alliance (NASA), Moses Wetangula-led Ford Kenya Party decided not to field a candidate in Matungu. Instead, the lion party threw its weight behind ANC’s candidate.
ANC would then shelve its ambitions in Kabuchai Constituency, Bungoma County, reciprocating Ford Kenya’s gesture. ANC is supporting Ford Kenya’s candidate in Kabuchai.
All these political machinations were geared towards eliminating sibling rivalry between the NASA-affiliated parties- ANC, Ford Kenya, Wiper Party, and the elephant in the room- ODM.
In politics, as highlighted in Robert Greene’s 48 Laws of Power, one has to be subtle- congenial yet cunning, democratic yet devious. Seems Raila Odinga is a good student.
‘Bullish’ ODM insisted it is their democratic right to field a candidate in Matungu, giving a direct nomination to former MP David Were.
Political scores to be settled
In the event ANC candidate, Peter Oscar Nabulindo, wins in the by-election, political pundits say it will settle the unending debate of who the Mulemebe nation political kingpin is- Raila Odinga or Musalia Mudavadi.
Yet ODM-ANC sibling rivalry only pleases and/or favours Deputy President William Ruto’s United Democratic Party (UDA).
UDA is banking on ANC and ODM to split votes, so that its candidate can easily sail to a win.
Kakamega Senator Cleophas Malala knows this very well. During one of the last campaign trials for ANC’s Nabulindo, Malala said that the Matungu by-election outcome will decide who will clinch the Presidency in 2022.
While urging residents to vote wisely owing to Matungu’s crucial political sphere for the country, Malala said;
“Yule mtu atashinda hapa Matungu atakuwa Rais wa Kenya 2022. Mjue kwamba mkipigia Alex Lanya kura, mnapigia William Ruto kura. Mkipigia David Were kura, mnapigia Raila Odinga kura. Mkipigia Peter Oscar Nabulindo kura, mnapigia Musalia Mudavadi kura.”
The Matungu parliamentary race has attracted at least 15 candidates, including nine independent ones.
The candidates are; Peter Nabulindo (ANC), Alex Lanya (UDA), David Were (ODM), Charles Kasamani (United Democratic Party), Paul Achayo (Movement for Democracy and Growth) and Faida Auma (Maendeleo (Maendeleo Chap Chap).
The independent candidates include Christabel Murunga, Eugene Murunga, Bernard Wakoli, Gregory Atoko, Kevin Borry Nectus, Wilberforce Lutta, Athman Wangara, Anzelimo Kongoti and Samuel Munyekenye.
The Matungu seat fell vacant after the demise of MP Justus Murunga in November 2020.