Intense lobbying begins as seven eye Kisii speaker post

Seven candidates, including former speaker Kerosi Ondieki, have shown interest in the Kisii assembly speaker’s seat.

The candidates have begun intense lobbying ahead of the election, which will be done immediately MCAs are sworn in.

Regional balance and clanism have dominated the campaigns, with Governor James Ongwae said to be keen on who becomes speaker.

Those who have shown interest are Knut Kisii South executive secretary Geoffrey Mogire, former Kisii county assembly legal officer Gideon Nyambati, former Basi-Boitang’are MCA Isaiah Mosota and former Bombaba ward rep Koina Onyancha

Others are Nyaribari Masaba parliamentary loser Ocharo Kebira, Nyaribari Chache parliamentary loser Rachel Otundo, and Norah Ombui who lost in the woman rep race.

A non-lawyer can also be speaker

In separate interviews on Thursday, Mogire and Nyambati said they are best suited for the job.

Mogire said, “I want to debunk this myth that to be speaker you must be a lawyer. I’m best suited for this because I’m passionate about governance, [and] I have a background from trade unionism and human rights.”

Mogire, who comes from Bonchari constituency, said the seat should be reserved for the constituency because it does not have a top seat in the county.

He should not be denied an opportunity to be speaker because of his closeness to Governor Ongwae.

“I supported him and other NASA candidates. That should not be used to lock me out of the race. Do you expect that Jubilee will allow an opposition-allied speaker in the National Assembly or Senate?” Mogire said.

Nyambati, a lawyer who practices in Kisii town, said, “Having been a legal advisor and being an advocate, I’m best suited for this seat. I witnessed a lot of wrangles in the assembly, which affected the performance of MCAs. These are issues I will address.”

He has met 32 of the 45 elected MCAs who assured him of their support.

Mosota, a former member of the Speaker’s Panel, on Wednesday said, “I have spoken to some members and they are willing to support me. I have first sought the support of my party ODM and NASA coalition.”

Orange Party form majority

ODM has 13 MCAs in the assembly and is likely to nominate seven, while Jubilee has nine and will nominate four.

PDP has five, while five independents were elected. Only 11 MCAs were reelected out of 45.

Former leader of majority Protus Ombati was among those reelected.

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