The five storey medical complex which is almost complete at Gatundu District Hospital.The market is just one of the many development projects that the government has initiated in the constituency.PHOTO BY KAMAU MAICHUHIE.
Vocal Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria is walking a tight rope as seeks to retain his seat in the August 8 elections.
Battle lines shave been drawn and a total of six aspirants have been cleared to run for the parliamentary seat. The controversial MP is facing stiff competition from Joyce Wanjiku Ngugi, Kung’u Kibathi and Simon Komu, who is Ndarugo Member of County Assembly.
Joseph Njoroge and Julius Chege are vying as independent candidates while Levis Kinyua is vying on a PNU ticket, while Julius Njenga is contesting the seat on a Maendeleo Chap Chap party platform.
Ms Ngugi, the widow of MP Jossy Ngugi who died in May 2014, withdrew from the race last week but declined to endorse Kuria, saying she would only campaign for the re-election of President Uhuru Kenyatta.
Political observers opine that the candidature of the three is likely to eat into Kuria’s votes, while giving his rivals from other wards an edge.
Komu and Njenga come from Ndarugo and Kiganjo wards respectively while Kia Mwangi Ward has no candidate after the withdrawal of Ngugi from the race.
The race is bound to even become more interesting in the coming days if the grapevine is anything to go by. Several candidates are said to be contemplating bowing out of the race and in return support Komu with a view to ensuring Kuria is dislodged come August 8.
A source familiar with goings-on says talks were at an advanced stage to convince some of the aspirants to drop their bids and support Komu, who is seen as a formidable force against Mr Kuria.
“Yes it is true we are having talks and we are hoping to make a major announcement soon, which will be a game-changer in the race for the Gatundu South seat,” said the source who declined to be named.
Komu said his priority would be youth unemployment, poverty reduction and raising dwindling education standards should he be elected to the August House.
Kuria and some of the candidates are also embroiled in a bitter confrontation over who should get the credit for the massive development projects initiated by the national government.
Ngugi and Kibathi are accusing Kuria of using mega projects initiated by the national government to seek political mileage by purporting he was the one who lobbied for them.
The area, which is the home constituency of President Uhuru Kenyatta, has for the past four years witnessed mega development projects. Among the projects initiated by the national government is the Sh800 million hospital wing at Gatundu Level 4 hospital.
Kuria has however dismissed such criticism as misguided. “My role an as MP is being a catalyst for development, a thing I have no apologies for . I will continue to do that for my people,” he said.
The MP says it is evident he has achieved a lot in the short time he has been in office. He says he is part and parcel of the national government that was funding the mega projects.