HomeNewsPolitics Ruto allies claim Oparanya would back DP in 2022 polls - Beaking Kenya News

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Saturday, 23 February 2019

HomeNewsPolitics Ruto allies claim Oparanya would back DP in 2022 polls

William Ruto, Wycliffe Oparanya 
Council of Governors Chairman Wycliffe Oparanya with Shinyalu MP Justus Kizito and Deputy President William Ruto during a consultative meeting at the latter's Karen office in Nairobi, February 12, 2019. PHOTO | DPPS
By BENSON AMADALA
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Allies of Deputy President William Ruto from Kakamega County have lately been sending strong signals about a possible shift in the region’s political realignment, pointing to a possible alliance with Governor Wycliffe Oparanya.
Ikolomani MP Bernard Shinali, the chairman of the Kakamega County MPs Caucus, has been vocal about the emerging political arrangement that, he says, would bring on board Mr Oparanya, who is the ODM deputy party leader.
Mr Oparanya, who recently added another feather to his cap after he was elected chairman of the Council of Governors’ (CoG), has publicly declared that he plans to contest the presidency after serving his final term as governor in 2022.
RUNNING MATE
The political undercurrents in the region come amidst reports that Mr Oparanya has been approached by Mr Ruto in a deal that would see the county boss become the DP’s running mate. But Mr Oparanya has dismissed the claims as a farce.
Mr Shinali, a close ally of Dr Ruto, said lawmakers from the region met at the DP’s Karen residence for consultations on the matter and had agreed to vote as a bloc in 2022.
Mumias East MP Benjamin Washiali said he has been close to the DP since 2001.
“It is not possible for me to turn my back on a friend who has stood with me all along since we met. I will stand with him to the end,” vowed Mr Washiali during the burial of his stepmother in Shitoto village, Mumias East.
'BLACKMAIL'
However, Kakamega Senator Cleophas Malala accused the MPs of being insincere in their dealings and merely out to “blackmail” Mr Oparanya.
Mr Malala spoke at Mabole grounds in Butere sub-county during a homecoming party for Governor Oparanya after his elevation as CoG boss.
“Our brothers should declare who they support between Dr Ruto and Governor Oparanya to end the confusion they are creating,” said Mr Malala.
Mr Musa Chibole, Mr Oparanya’s political adviser, dismissed the MPs’ claims.
“Anybody talking about political formations before the constitutional reforms are in place is doing so on quick sand,” he said.

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