Nzioka Waita's announcement catches Kenyans by surprise

The announcement came amid reports that Waita had teamed up with Raphael Tuju ahead of the 2022 General Election

Machakos County gubernatorial aspirant Nzioka Waita

Former State House Chief of Staff Nzioka Waita pulled a surprise move on many Kenyans who expected him to announce that he had dropped out of the Machakos gubernatorial race.

Speculation was rife since Wednesday when Waita announced that he would speak to the media regarding the future of his political ambitions in a press conference on Thursday.

The announcement came in the backdrop of reports that he had been picked by former Jubilee Secretary General Raphael Tuju to be his running mate in the Nairobi gubernatorial race.

According to opinion leaders and political pundits, Nzioka’s media invitation had cryptic language which some interpreted as a bow out of the Machakos race.

After careful and extensive consultations, Mr Waita, accompanied by CCU Party officials, will outline his gubernatorial prospects and plans based on emerging political considerations,” read the invite in part.

Ahead of the media conference, Nzioka quipped: "There comes a time when a man must consult widely, reflect conscientiously, sacrifice opportunities, and make decisions that can enhance his political destiny. The time to explore unchartered territory is nigh. He who fights and runs away lives to fight another day.

Nzioka, however, announced that he had picked Machakos Speaker Florence Mwangangi as running mate ahead of the Machakos Governor contest.

Speaker Mwangangi, Health CAS Dr Mercy Mwangangi's mother, recently defected from Wiper Party to join the Chama Cha Uzalendo.

I have met women in the market with no water and no toilets. I have gone to places where boreholes have been dug all over but there is no water. I have gone to corners in this county where roads have not reached.

The hospitals have no medicine and then they tell me, Waita why don’t you vie in Nairobi. What business do I have in Nairobi while my people are suffering?” the former State House operative said.

After accepting the invitation to vie alongside Waita, Speaker Mwangangi said she had shelved her own gubernatorial ambition to support Mr Waita for the sake and love of the Machakos people.

As a conscientious and seasoned politician, I take note of the complementary value that our joint candidature with Mr Waita presents. For this reason and after extensive consultations with my family, supporters, my think tank, we have agreed to join forces and deliver the Governor’s seat back to the people of Machakos,” she said.

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