•The professionals from the Keiyo and Marakwet communities met in Eldoret where they made the declaration.
•They noted that they believe it is only Odinga who would help resolve challenges in the region especially banditry in Kerio Valley.
More than 700 professionals from Elgeyo Marakwet County have endorsed Azimio leader Raila Odinga for the presidency in what is emerging as a heavy political blow to DP William Ruto.
Elgeyo Marakwet is a region perceived to be Ruto's political bastion.
The professionals from the Keiyo and Marakwet communities met in Eldoret where they made the declaration.
They noted that they believe it is only Odinga who would help resolve challenges in the region especially banditry in Kerio Valley.
They also backed Elgeyo Marakwet Governor Alex Tolgos who is vying for the Senate seat in the region against incumbent senator Kipchumba Murkomen. Tolgos is vying on a Jubilee ticket.
The professionals and key political leaders from the region were led by their patron Dr John Kibosia who is a former CEO of the Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital.
“We know Odinga has demonstrated his commitment and love for this country and his choice of Martha Karua as a running mate makes them the safe hands for the leadership of this county," said Dr Kibosia.
Elgeyo Marakwet is perceived to be a stronghold of DP Ruto but the move by the professionals is likely to shake up politics in the county where Governor Tolgos is completing his term.
The leaders present celebrated Tolgos terming him as a bold, fearless and visionary leader who had transformed the county during his tenure.
The professionals and leaders present included Deputy Speaker of the Senate Professor Margaret Kamar, CAS Linah Kilimo, and former Marakwet West MP Boaz Kaino among others.
Kamar said she is not vying for any seat in the August 9th polls but would now camp in the region to campaign for Odinga and Tolgos.
“We want to be part of the next government and for sure it’s now evident that the 5th President of Kenya will be Odinga”, said Kamar.
Kaino said Odinga and Karua had for many years fought for the welfare of Kenyans and the time had come for them to take over leadership and eliminate the curse of corruption which had bedevilled the country for many years.
He claimed that some of those opposing Odinga were involved in the Arror and Kimwarer dam scandals which were cancelled by the government.
He regretted that residents of the region had lost massive economic benefits following the cancellation of the dams.
“All Kenyans know very well that it's Odinga and Karua who have the capacity to fight corruption in this country. The other camp is comprised of people who perpetrate corruption and benefited from the dam scandals”, said Kaino.
Kilimo said they would campaign hard in the next one month to ensure that Odinga gets many votes in the Rift Valley region.
“Our region has suffered immensely with many challenges in terms of infrastructure and other development challenges but we have hope that Odinga and Karua are the keys to the solutions we have been yearning for," Kilimo said.
Dr KIbosia said they had already talked with Odinga and Karua on how the insecurity challenges in Kerio Valley will be resolved.