Governors from Ukambani yesterday reacted angrily to an assertion by Wiper Party leader Kalonzo Musyoka that their support was of little political consequence.
In an interview with the Nation at the weekend, Mr Musyoka said he was used to the growing opposition to his leadership in the region.
Mr Musyoka’s claim that his critics were inconsequential to his presidential bid elicited angry reactions from Governors Alfred Mutua (Machakos), Charity Ngilu (Kitui) and Kivutha Kibwana (Makueni), who dismissed his said hold on Kamba politics as a mirage.
Dr Mutua said he won the Machakos gubernatorial seat twice without Mr Musyoka’s backing, while Prof Kibwana said he helped the Wiper boss mend fences with leaders he was not on talking terms with in the run-up to the 2017 elections.
Dr Mutua said Mr Musyoka’s claim that he had a secret pact with ODM leader Raila Odinga had exposed him as a politician with no partners at the national level, who was only clinging on to fading tribal alliances.
In a 10-point statement, Prof Kibwana questioned Mr Musyoka’s sincerity, saying, they were with him and Ms Ngilu campaigning for Mr Odinga as the joint presidential candidate for Nasa coalition.
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“Why has he repeatedly disagreed with all the senior leaders from the Lower Eastern region, including former Kitui Senator David Musila who resigned in a huff as Wiper chairman, all Ukambani governors and lately former Machakos Senator Johnstone Muthama?” he asked.
The Governor challenged Mr Musyoka to enumerate his development record in his political career spanning 35 years, including five as vice-president.
“Even from an ethnic perspective, can Kalonzo look at his Asal community in the eye and say he has treated it decently and fairly? That he has been a mentor to a community of about 5 million people as he tries to reach out to the rest of Kenya?” Prof Kibwana posed.
“I want to tell you that in 2013 and 2017, the same voices were against me running with Raila but what was the outcome? The Kamba nation voted more for Raila than even the Luos... You cannot deny them the right to shout” Mr Musyoka said.