2022 RACE

Luhyas stand to benefit from Uhuru-Raila alliance, says MP Wangwe

Navakholo lawmaker has, however, urged the community to unite to increase its bargaining power

In Summary

•Uhuru and Raila are reportedly crafting a super alliance comprising a wing of Jubilee, ODM, Wiper Democratic Movement, ANC and Ford Kenya

•The team allegedly supports an expanded executive and is behind the push for a constitutional change

Nabakholo MP Emmanuel Wangwe in Butula on Friday
Nabakholo MP Emmanuel Wangwe in Butula on Friday

The Luhya community could be the biggest beneficiary of the alliance allegedly fronted by President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga, a lawmaker has said.

Navakholo MP Emmanuel Wangwe has, however, urged the community to unite to increase its bargaining power. 

Uhuru and Raila are reportedly building a super alliance comprising a wing of Jubilee, ODM, Wiper Democratic Movement, ANC and Ford Kenya. Such an alliance would most likely inform political formations that would define the 2022 succession race.

The team allegedly supports an expanded executive and is behind the push for a constitutional change through the Building Bridges Initiative. In view of the looming developments, Wangwe says the Luhya vote bloc has the potential to heavily influence the 2022 race.

"What's important now is for our people to present a united front come 2022 and the time is now, whether it is Mudavadi, Wetang’ula or whoever it is. The Kikuyus and Luos, who are the first and third largest [communities], are united and it is now us, the second-largest tribe, to come together," Wangwe said.

The Luhya nation is home to ANC leader Musalia Mudavadi, Ford Kenya's Moses Wetang'ula, and Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya. The three have declared their interests in the 2022 presidential race.

Devolution CS Eugene Wamalwa is also from the region. On Saturday, Eugene said the winning coalition will be formed six months to the polls. He said those engaging in early election campaigns are wasting their time.

But Wangwe yesterday said a united Luhya onslaught will be more attractive to other communities and will enable them to back one of its sons to power. 

"Our people must be focused to ensure our numerical strength counts this time," he said.

He appealed to Uhuru and Raila to be genuine in their unity calls if they have to end decades-old ethnic animosities that have previously left many innocent Kenyans suffering.

"We hope the unity is not to frustrate some individuals but for the good of Kenyans," he said.

(Edited by F'Orieny)