Former Devolution CS Anne Waiguru has spoken up of her chances to clinch the Kirinyaga governor’s seat in the 2017 General Election.
While making reference to the mixed reception that her rivals Narc Kenya Martha Karua and incumbent Joseph Ndathi received, Waiguru said the people of Kirinyaga had already decided that she was best placed to scale the county to greater heights.
“The warm reception I received from the people of Kirinyaga on Tuesday is evidence that they have confidence in me and my track record,” said Ms Waiguru in a statement on Wednesday.
All the three candidates were introduced to the crowd by Deputy President William Ruto and given an opportunity to great the residents.
Karua was forced to cut short her speech after the crowd heckled her, demanding that she joins Jubilee. In defiance, the Narc Kenya leader flashed her party symbol with Ruto echoing the crowd’s calls by for her to defect.
The Narc Kenya leader has in the past affirmed that she would not dissolve her party and join Jubilee while remaining coy on who she would support in the 2017 presidential elections.
The incumbent, Ndathi, could not address the crowd as he was booed with most people in the crowd shouting him down over his alleged mismanagement of the county.
Kirinyaga is among the regions that are considered Jubilee stronghold meaning Karua may face an uphill task in attempting to clinch the seat on a Narc Kenya ticket, according to political pundits.
In the 2013 General Election, Karua garnered a paltry 2,438 votes in Kirinyaga behind Uhuru’s 231,868 votes and Raila’s 3,471 votes.
Both Ndathi and Waiguru are seeking Jubilee nomination with Karua set to meet the winner in the ballot.
In 2014, Waiguru was tipped to be Ruto's running mate in the 2022 general election where he intends to run for president.
At the time, Waiguru was considered to be one of the most technocratic cabinet secretaries, having experiences a meteroric rise in her career.
Being at the helm of the Devolution docket made Waiguru perhaps the country's most powerful CSs since the docket touched on virtually all facets of the national and county governments and was a Ministry of State in the President’s Office.
“She had no elective political history before her appointment to the Cabinet, was literally unknown to the public before Cabinet was formed, but today she is the most familiar and powerful Secretary in Kenya. She runs a ministry that interacts with nearly every facet of the national and county governments.
“She is described as coldly efficient; amazingly effective; ruthless; tough, etc. She strikes me as the kind of woman that would intimidate Kenya’s mainly male politicians; a ‘Martha Karua’ in the making. I have also heard her referred to as Jubilee's ‘John Michuki’," said political commentator Ngunjiri Wambugu.
A Cabinet colleague told the Star that Waiguru's strongest credential is the fact that she has the President’s ear and can, therefore, move mountains.
"We all fear her – literally – because it is difficult to say when she is speaking for the President and, or herself," said a minister.
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However, Waiguru was places at the centre of the Sh1.6 billion NYS scandal after key suspect Josephine Kabura filed an affidavit describing her alleged relationship with the then CS.
Waiguru has distances herself from Kabura, whom she described as a 'crazy woman'.