POPULOUS VOTING BLOC

Twist as Mbadi's clan endorses candidate for Suba South MP seat

Sangira, an indepedent candidate, received the blessings of Kalisuria clan

In Summary
  • Mbadi is not defending his seat after he expressed interest to become Homa Bay governor only to bolt out in support of Gladys Wanga.
  • The void has provided an opportunity for newcomers, including former Prime Minister Raila Odinga’s chief of staff Caroli Omondi.
Stephen Sangira after his endorsement to vie for Suba South MP seat at Seka grounds on July 29, 2022.
Stephen Sangira after his endorsement to vie for Suba South MP seat at Seka grounds on July 29, 2022.
Image: ROBERT OMOLLO

The race for Suba South parliamentary seat has taken a new turn after a clan endorsed independent candidate Stephen Sangira.

Sangira was last Friday endorsed by elders from Kalisuria clan which is the populous voting bloc in the constituency to replace the current MP and ODM national chairman John Mbadi.

Mbadi is not defending his parliamentary seat after he expressed interest to become Homa Bay governor only to bolt out following an agreement that saw the party hand over the ticket to Gladys Wanga.

The void provided an opportunity for newcomers, including former Prime Minister Raila Odinga’s chief of staff Caroli Omondi.

ODM handed a direct ticket to Caroli who has been a long term political rival to Mbadi. The outgoing MP has served Suba South for 15 years.

Other candidates are former Homa Bay Trade chief officer Julius Opala, University don Medo Misama and Jared Abich.

Since Caroli took the party ticket and got Mbadi's support, it was assumed  the race would be walkover.

However, things changed last week when elders from Kalisuria clan made an about-turn and endorsed Sangira who hails from Kachuodho.

Mbadi hails from Kalisuria while Caroli comes from Kadibuoro clan.

Since 2007, Suba South constituency has been determined by clan inclination.

Kalisuria and Kachuodho clans have been collaborating to support Mbadi against Caroli’s Kadibuoro. This saw Mbadi get elected for three terms.

Other clans which take sides with either Kalisuria or Kadibuoro are Kamuala, Wagasi, Orore and Ong'ongo, which help top up the votes. 

Last Friday, at Seka, Sangira’s candidature got a boost after the Kalisuria elders endorsed him. The elders, led by Benson Onjula, said their decision represents the voters from the clan.

“Members of Kachuodho clan have supported our son John Mbadi for MP for 15 years. It’s our time to return the favour by standing with Sangira,” Onjula said.

Alloys Obugo from Wagasi said they made a lot of consultations before joining Kalisuria clan and concluding to endorse Sangira. He said they want residents of Suba South to continue living in unity for economic prosperity.

“Time is coming when we will want the Suba South leadership to rotate among the clans comprising the constituency. For now we have proposed and settled on Sangira to succeed Mbadi,” Obugo said.

The elders said they want equal distribution of resources and development in the constituency. The elders asked for peaceful campaigns among the candidates.

Sangira said the endorsement has boosted his campaign morale and expressed confidence of winning the seat on August 9 election.

 “Suba South has water scarcity, low electricity supply and bad roads as its major challenges. The endorsement has energised me and made me ready to win the seat and deliver services to residents,” Sangira said.

Mbadi has, however, asked residents of his constituency to stand with the party candidate who is Caroli.

On Saturday, when speaking at Nyenga Mixed Secondary School, the ODM national chairman warned MP candidates against using elders to settle their political scores.

He urged residents to vote for ODM candidates and Raila for presidency.

“Elders shouldn’t be used to conduct unwarranted endorsements,” Mbadi said.

 

(edited by Amol Awuor)

Suba South MP candidate Stephen Sangira speaks to journalists after being endorsed by elders from Kalisurian clan at Seka grounds on July 29, 2022.
Suba South MP candidate Stephen Sangira speaks to journalists after being endorsed by elders from Kalisurian clan at Seka grounds on July 29, 2022.
Image: ROBERT OMOLLO
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