Political heavyweights seek Kiambu governor seat

The aspirants include former county chiefs Kabogo, Waititu, incumbent Nyoro, Senator Wamatangi , MPs Wainaina and Kuria

In Summary
  • Nine battling for tickets and 1,180,920 votes in Kiambu county.
  • Two women including Dr Juliet Kimemia and Mwende Gatabaki have also thrown their hats in the ring.


Kiambu Governor James Nyoro.
Kiambu Governor James Nyoro.
Image: John Kamau

High octane politics are set to be witnessed in Kiambu county as political heavyweights roll up sleeves in the race for the governor's seat ahead of August 9 General Election.

The seat has attracted nine aspirants including political bigwigs led by former Governors William Kabogo and Ferdinand Waititu, the incumbent James Nyoro, Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria, Thika Town MP Patrick Wainaina alias Wajungle, Senator Kimani Wamatangi and Kiambu County Assembly Speaker Stephen Ndichu.

Two women including Dr Juliet Kimemia and Mwende Gatabaki have also thrown their hats in the ring.

The nine will be fighting for the 1,180,920 votes in Kiambu with each gunning for the highest percentage of votes. 

The county has 12 subcounties with Ruiru leading with the highest number of registered voters (159,337) followed by Thika (147,761), Juja (114,761), Githunguri (99,384), Kiambaa (95,413), Kikuyu (91,157) and Limuru (87, 258).

Others are Kabete (85,446), Kiambu (80,730), Lari (76,655), Gatundu South (75,858) and Gatundu North (67,598).

Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria.
Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria.
Image: image: John Kamau

Kuria announced he will be contesting for the county’s coveted seat on his Chama Cha Kazi  ticket two weeks ago. This is after he conducted an online poll asking his followers which position he should go for.

“The voice of the people is the voice of God. So help me God. Under your wings I feel safe,” Kuria wrote on his social media pages as he announced his candidature.

His entrance in the race sent shivers in the county’s political quarters and complicated the race forcing some of the aspirants to go back to their drawing board.

For instance, Wainaina who decamped from UDA in January and announced that he would be contesting as an independent candidate, has now returned to UDA.

On Monday last week, Wainaina paid for UDA nomination fees and announced he will be contesting on UDA ticket. He is now expected to face off  with Waititu for the party ticket in the April nominations.

Thika MP Patrick Wainaina alias Wajungle.
Thika MP Patrick Wainaina alias Wajungle.
Image: image: John Kamau

Wainaina, a first time MP, beat all odds in the 2017 general election to rise to the August house as an independent candidate. He floored his main competitor Alice Ng’ang’a who was vying on a Jubilee party ticket [the most dominant party during the elections].

“This is where I am now UDA and I’m confident that come August 9 I’ll be at the helm of the Kiambu county leadership. My aim is to provide a servant-leadership governance and bring developments within our county that will foster prosperity in all sectors,” Wainaina recently said.

Kabogo on Friday last week declared his intentions to recapture the Kiambu governor seat. He announced that he will be contesting on his Tujibebe Wakenya Party.

He was addressing a consultative meeting attended by aspirants seeking to vie for various positions on his party.

Kabogo was in office from 2013 to 2017 when he was floored by Ferdinand Waititu who garnered 716,336 votes against his 192,045 votes. Waititu vied on a Jubilee party ticket after beating Kabogo in the party’s nominations.

However Waititu’s victory was short-lived as he was implicated in graft and gross misconduct and later impeached from his position in 2019.

He has now declared his candidature for the coveted seat on an UDA ticket.

Former Kiambu Governor William Kabogo.
Former Kiambu Governor William Kabogo.
Image: image: John Kamau

Waititu has been accompanying UDA party leader Deputy President William Ruto in his campaign trails across the country where he has been blaming his woes that led to his ouster to his political stand of supporting the DP’s presidential bid.

“I was forcefully removed from the Kiambu governor seat because of my close association with the DP. However I am going back to Kiambu and I will win again in August,” Waititu said during one of the rallies.

Waititu’s removal paved way for his the deputy Nyoro to rise to the governor’s position. The incumbent is set to defend his seat on a Jubilee party ticket or any other party affiliated to Azimio la Umoja led by ODM leader Raila Odinga.

Nyoro at an event in Kiambu last week said he spent his two-year tenure transforming the county through infrastructural development especially in the health sector.

He said his transformative work has been felt by Kiambu residents and is optimistic he will be voted in again come August 9.

“I’ve been on a journey to transform Kiambu to an agricultural and industrial hub. We have initiated and completed life-changing projects in a bid to restore the county’s lost glory,” Nyoro said.

Senator Kimani Wamatangi, who has been in office for two terms, has been crisscrossing the county wooing voters to back his gubernatorial bid.

Also Kimemia and Gatabaki have been meeting groups as they strategise to give their male counterparts a run  for their money in the race.

The duel is set to pick momentum once campaigns officially kick off.




-Edited by SKanyara

Kiambu Senator Kimani Wamatangi.
Kiambu Senator Kimani Wamatangi.
Image: image: John KAMAU
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