Baraka Karama @PeopleDailyKe
National Supper Alliance (Nasa) leader Raila Odinga faces with a litmus test in his Nyanza political base over the impending by-elections in Homa Bay county and Ugenya constituency.
The holders of the two seats Cyprian Awiti (Homa Bay governor) and Chris Karan (Ugenya MP), which were nullified by the courts, have already filed an appeal to protest the ruling. In the event they lose the appeal, Raila would be forced to marshal his troops to campaign for the duo in a bid to stamp his authority as the undisputed political king pin of the region.
Karan won the August election by a small margin of 265 votes against the immediate former MP David Ochieng’, who vied under the MDG party. Awiti also survived narrowly and managed 210,173 votes against former Kasipul MP Joseph Magwanga who had 189,060 votes.
Speaking to the People Daily on phone, Ochieng’ exuded confidence saying he will win the seat in the forthcoming mini-poll. “During the campaigns they went round saying only ODM MPs should be elected because Raila was going to be president and I still managed the many votes, now you can imagine this time Raila is not the president what strategy will they use?” he posed.
He said the Ugenya constituents had already made up their minds and will not be hoodwinked by cheap propaganda. “The era of voting six-piece is gone and it will never come back in our region.
Take it from me that seat will not be for ODM party,” added Ochieng’. Karan has, however, dismissed Ochieng’s assertion saying the constituency was not ready to re-elect a non-performer. “We all know the former MP was a puppet of the Jubilee Party and this time round the people of Ugenya will re-confirm that indeed they belong to the ODM party,” he said.