•Ongeri rubbished reports that he is considering pulling out of the race and accused some of his opponents of spreading the rumours.
•He added: “I have already paid my nomination fees and I’m soon getting my nomination certificate then hit the ground”.
Kisii Senator Sam Ongeri has maintained that he is in the governor’s race.
He rubbished reports that he is considering pulling out of the race and accused some of his opponents of spreading the rumours.
Ongeri recently ditched ODM for DAP-K, which he termed as the fastest growing party in Kenya.
Speaking to the Star, Ongeri said: “The reports are absolutely baseless. I want to assure my supporters that I’m in the race and I will be on the ballot on August 9. Some of my opponents have made me an agenda in their rallies.”
He added: “I have already paid my nomination fees and I’m soon getting my nomination certificate then hit the ground. I left ODM because I did not want to be party to the nomination confusion,” Ongeri.
Senator Ongeri further told his opponents to carry out civil campaigns. “Let us sell our agenda. Tell the people what you have done and what you will do for them. We should be judged by our track record, character and credentials,” he added.
Ongeri also asked his opponents and other politicians to stop the practice of hiring crowds to jeer their opponents.
“It is a retrogressive practice. We should also respect funerals. It’s disheartening when some politicians go to funerals with fanfare. It’s against our culture,” the former Cabinet minister said.
Ongeri said he will soon unveil his lineup including his running mate, senator and woman representative. “I have a team I will work with and will unveil them at the right time,” he said.
Jackline Karani, who quit ODM after the party gave Janet Ong’era direct nomination, will fly the DAP-K flag.
“I have made up my mind, I have made a final decision to join DAP-K. Our victory will change the lives of the people of Kisii,” she said.
Ongeri reiterated that despite defecting from ODM, he will still supports Azimio presidential aspirant Raila Odinga.
“I’m fully behind his presidential bid. He is the right candidate to take over from President Uhuru Kenyatta. I have worked with him before and I know he can take this country forward. We want to have undisputed and uncontested election on August 9,” Ongeri said.
In the governor race expected to be hotly contested, Ongeri will face off with Dagoretti North MP Simba Arati (ODM), Chris Obure (Jubilee), Manson Nyamweya (KNC), Ezekiel Machogu (UDA), and the only woman contender Rachel Otundo (PPK).
Janet Ong’era, who had declared her interest in the race, shelved her ambition and opted to defend her woman representative post while Kisii Deputy Governor Joash Maangi, who had also shown interest in the race, will now contest the senator’s seat.
Youthful Charles Matoke of ANC was prevailed upon to step down for Machogu.
Edited by Henry Makori