Temperatures are rising in Kajiado’s political scene after the Azimio-One Kenya announced that unpopular candidates within the alliance will be sieved.
Those targetted are Azimio candidates vying for governor, senate, woman MP, and MPs’ positions.
In the case of Kajiado, former governor David Nkedianye (Jubilee) will face out with the sitting governor Joseph Lenku (ODM), while Judith Pareno will face off with Moses Sakuda (Jubilee) for the senate position.
Simayiai Rakita (Jubilee) will battle it with Jenipher Moinkett (ODM), while Kakuta Maimai (ODM) will face off with Marina Kelly (Jubilee).
This decision will be made next week throughout the country where opinion polls will be carried out in crowded races.
Already, the alliance has commissioned a fresh round of opinion polls which will be used to pick one candidate to carry the coalition’s flag in hotly contested seats.
Those found to enjoy the least support will be asked to step down and back the leading candidate.
The aim is to solidify votes behind one strong candidate from the coalition and improve their chances of beating the Kenya Kwanza opponents.
The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission is expected to gazette the names of candidates for various seats on June 30.
Sources privy to the ongoing plans said Azimio presidential candidate Raila Odinga and his running mate Martha Karua on Monday met the coalition’s regional coordinators and pronounced themselves on the matter.
This new arrangement has thrown the candidates and voters in Kajiado into a spin, division, and confusion.
The seat of governor is the most sought position, and already temperatures on the Lenku side are rising by the minute in Kajiado.
Some supporters of governor Lenku are wondering how the opinion will be carried out as others see the move as an attempt to sieve their candidate out of the race.
Those on the Nkedianye’s side said they are ready for the poll and added that they will resect the outcome.
Speaking in Kirinyaga early in the week, Kariua said the alliance will hold open negotiations with all aspirants and agree to support the most popular candidate.
“The exercise will be fair and we will bring on board all aspirants from the affiliate parties and agree on who will vie on the Azimio ticket. This will be done before June 30,” said Karua.
Sources said the coalition leaders struck a deal to ensure they fielded one candidate per seat.
National presidential campaign coordinator Raphael Tuju has been tasked to coordinate the plan. He will help review the survey and advise the national leadership.
According to Azimio National Secretariat member and ODM chairman John Mbadi, the coalition had mapped the country and identify areas they need to agree to have only one candidate.
“What the coalition leadership wants is to avoid splitting votes, which could end up favouring opponents,’’ he said.
Seats being targeted are those of the governor, Woman Rep, the Senate, and the National Assembly.
Those who will be asked to step down would be promised positions in the government should Azimio win the election.
A meeting held in Nairobi with the Azimio Presidential campaign team and regional coordinators cited the governor’s contest in Kajiado pitting two members of the coalition: Lenku and Nkedianye who face competition from UDA’s Katoo ole Metito.