The Star (Nairobi)

Kenya: Jirongo to Vie for Kakamega Senator

THE race for Kakamega county senator seat has taken a new twist after the immediate former Lugari MP Cyrus Jirongo declared his interest.

Jirongo's entry into the race is a major headache for former Ikolomani MP Boni Khalwale who had declared opposition from Prof Khasiani Shanyisa as a walk-over.

Jirongo, who had earlier indicated he would vie for the presidency, said on Friday he had opted to support Cord presidential candidate Raila Odinga "so that we can remove the seat from the mountain side."

Addressing supporters at Nabongo cultural centre in Mumias where he unveiled his campaign, the Federal Party leader said he had realised crowding in the race was giving Jubilee coalition candidate Uhuru Kenyatta higher chances.

"I have severally asked Mudavadi to rescind his presidential bid because I know it is only Raila who can remove the leadership from our brothers in Central. But Mudavadi seems to have a hidden motive and won't listen to anybody," Jirongo told FPK members in Mumias.

He claimed retired President Moi and President Mwai Kibaki are behind the Jubilee candidate's bid to replace Kibaki. "The two have formed parties and sent candidates to vie in order to scuttle Raila's chances," Jirongo claimed.

Jirongo claimed Amani comprises Kanu and UDF that was formed by State house. He said New Ford Kenya party leader Eugene Wamalwa "is just a branch of Jubilee hanging somewhere to confuse mathematics."

He asked Western residents not to vote for Amani coalition, saying it would reduce Raila's chances. He said if Uhuru is elected, he will not relinquish the seat until after 10 years and vowed to unite Western residents before March 4 under the Federal Party of Kenya.

"I have taken the initiative to bring people of Vihiga, Kakamega, Busia and Bungoma counties together so that we can move in one direction," he said.

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