It appears the decision by Bungoma Governor Ken Lusaka to change political camps and join Jubilee will pay off if the latest poll is anything to go by.
The latest survey by Infotrak shows Lusaka will retain his seat if elections were held today. His closest competitor Wycliffe Wangamati of Ford-Kenya, a NASA affiliate, seems to be struggling.
According to the poll, Governor Lusaka, who folded the New Ford Kenya Party which he was the leader of and joined Jubilee, will sail through with 52.2 per cent preference.
Wangamati is a distant second with 31.9 per cent. He is followed further behind by Alfred Khangati of ODM at 5.2 per cent.
According to the poll, even if Wangamati and Khangati, whose parties are both in NASA, were to combine forces with one of them stepping down and all factors being constant, he would still lag behind Lusaka by 15 per cent.
This is even if they manage to convince the 10.5 per cent of voters who are still undecided on their governor’s choice. Consumer Federation of Kenya (Cofek) Secretary General Stephen Mutoro who, is also in the Bungoma race, has a preference of 0.1 per cent.
In the senatorial race, the poll shows that Nasa co-principal and Ford Kenya party leader Moses Wetang’ula will retain his seat by a margin of 58.6 per cent against his closes competitor from Jubilee, Eusebius Mukhwana, who has 8.7 per cent preference.
ODM’s Boniface Nyongesa and Amani National Coalition’s David Makali will manage 7.8 and 5.0 per cent respectively. Undecided voters stood at 19.3 per swung to them.
Wetangula’s party also triumphed in the Woman Representative seat where Catherine Wambilianga would command 41.5 per cent if elections were held today.
However, the race for this seat is too close to call as the election date approaches considering that her closest competitor from JP, Reginalda Wanyoyi has 32 per cent preference with 21.9 per cent of the voters undecided.
“This is a wait and see game. Whoever between the two will convince the undecided will emerge the winner,” said Infotrak’s Mary Njoki.
In Migori, according to the survey conducted between July 10 and 15 through face to face interviews, incumbent Okoth Obado is the man to beat. The ODM governor has a preference of 71.9 per cent compared to 20.7 per cent for Ochilo Ayacko who is running as an independent after failing to get a ticket in the Opposition party.
For the country’s senatorial position the numbers are to ODM’s Ben Oluoch’s advantage with 70.2 per cent.
The closest of his seven competitors’ (most of them are independents) is Eddy Oketch with 4.6 per cent. The same applies to the Woman Representative seat where Pamela Ochieng takes the lead with 57.6 per cent followed by Ford Kenya’s Angellah Bhoke with 12.1 per cent.
ODM continued its domination further in Turkana County where the new Council of Governors Chair Josphat Nanok seems to be as good as the county’s second governor with a 77.7 per cent advantage against Jubilee’s John Munyes’ also the county’s senator who has 14.3 per cent.
In the Turkana senatorial seat, ODM’s Charles Malachy Imana is ahead of his Jubilee competitor with 53.2 per cent who has 20.7 per cent.
But that is not the case in the Woman rep seat with the difference between the two leaders fighting for the position being just two per cent.
In the poll, ODM’s Pauline Lokuruka has 26.2 per cent preference and JP’s Joyce Emanikor 24.5 per cent. There are also 12.5 per cent undecided voters.
“This is an indication that party can no longer be a determining factor in winning elections. It is what the leader has done or promises the people,” said Njoki.
For Nyandarua County, the lights are dimming for incumbent Daniel Waithaka who is now running as an independent after quitting JP on grounds of rigging in the party primaries.
Glimpse of hope
In the poll, former Head of the Public Service and Secretary to the Cabinet Francis Kimemia is in the lead with 66.7 per cent over Waithaka who is at 9.3.
For the senatorial seat, Paul Githomi is in the lead (44.6 per cent) compared to 25-year-old Maendeleo Chapa Chap John Muhia 1.7 per cent. However, 53 per cent of voters are still undecided which still gives Muhia a glimpse of hope.
In the Woman Representative seat, while there are 22.9 per cent undecided voters, the numbers are strongly for Faith Gitau Wairimu at 74.8 per cent compared to Monicah Mucheke of MCCP 1.2 per cent.
JP incumbent Embu Governor Martin Wambora is in the lead with 48.4 per cent against his senator Lenny Kivuti (26.2 per cent) who defected to Maendeleo Chap Chap from Jubilee.
In the senatorial seat, Peter Njeru of Jubilee is leading with 32.3 per cent followed by ODM Kennedy Njeru. But 57.7 per cent of voters are still undecided which makes the survey too early to call.
Infotrak explained that telephone interviews could be the reason for the high number of undecided voters where disclosure is not easy, but it could also be depicting the usual trend of voters being spoilt for choice when election approaches.