Trans Nzoia candidate hits campaign trail on rare ‘wheels’

Saturday July 22 2017

John Walubengo (in green shirt) on a donkey cart in Tuwan, Trans Nzoia on July 22, 2017. PHOTO | GERALD BWISA | NATION MEDIA GROUP

John Walubengo (in yellow shirt) on a donkey cart in Tuwan, Trans Nzoia, on July 22, 2017. PHOTO | GERALD BWISA | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

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For some political candidates, there is no better way to make a grand entry during campaigns than to use sleek vehicles or even choppers. But not for John Walubengo.

The 24-year-old, a candidate for member of the county assembly for Tuwan in Trans Nzoia, has caught the attention of many with his unique way of campaigning. He makes his trips on a cart pulled by three donkeys.

Mr Walubengo, a member of Ukweli Party, has been the talk of Kitale and has received criticism and praise in equal measure.

Saturday was business as usual with boda-boda riders trailing him as he addressed a crowd that milled around his cart which is decorated with his campaign posters.


Mr Walubengo, a former matatu conductor, told the Nation that he decided to use the cart because of financial constraints.

“I cannot afford to purchase a vehicle nor hire one that is why I chose to use three donkeys which are cheaper,” said Mr Walubengo, who sees his means of transport as an advantage as he can reach more voters.

He sat his Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education examinations in 2010 as a private candidate and he believes he is the right person for the seat.

“I have been working as a tout in town and loading and offloading vehicles to make ends meet. I was raised by a single mother in the slums so I understand the challenges affecting my community. People have been suffering due to poor leadership,” said Mr Walubengo, a father of two.


He said he chose to fight for his passion to lead and not to allow the lack of money to get in his way.

“I know I don’t have money or campaign machineries like other aspirants but I am smart and wise and have the qualities that make me the right person,” he added.

To make his campaign affordable, Mr Walubengo also relies on fellow youth who have volunteered to steer his campaigns and women whom he said prayed for his success daily. With two community-based organisations to his name, he said he had managed to convince well-wishers to help the poor in the ward.

“People should not underrate me because of what I use to campaign. They should look at what I am offering to them. I am facing competitors who are millionaires but I am not bothered at all. I know I will win. I am very serious with my campaigns and come August 8, I will be the MCA of Tuwan ward,” he said.