Several aspirants to run as independent candidates in Nyanza

Karachuonyo MP James Rege PHOTO:COURTESY

The list of politicians opting to run in the August polls as independent candidates is growing.

Unlike in the past when political parties were the only route to an elective position, the present constitution allows aspirants to vie for the seats without necessarily using any party’s ticket.

Article 85 states that any person shall be eligible to contest any election for public office if the person has not been a member of a party for at least 90 days prior to the election.

Among those keen to take advantage of this provision are Karachuonyo MP James Rege and Kisumu Central Parliamentary aspirant Yusuf Ooro, who have become partyless, thus leaving them with an opening to go it alone.

Rege told the Standard he would run as an independent candidate after wide consultation with various youth groups, his campaign teams, and elders.

Initially, he was contemplating quitting the race.


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Rege decamped from the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) to Jubilee early last year. He again distanced himself from Jubilee, effectively making him partyless.

He claimed that twice, he had won the ODM party primaries but was denied an ODM certificate, forcing him to seek legal redress to win it back.

Ooro, too, like Rege, is eyeing the crowded field of seven aspirants in the race for the ODM ticket for the Kisumu Central parliamentary seat as an independent candidate.

Ooro says allowing independent candidates could help alleviate the tension and violence often witnessed in party primaries

“Whoever wins the ODM ticket should brace themselves for Ooro, who has a direct ticket to the ballot in Kisumu Central,” he told the Standard.

Political pundits estimate that at least 20 MCAs in Kisumu, Siaya, Nyamira, Migori, and Kisii counties plan to go it alone in August. 


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