The Supreme Council of Nandi Community – Nandi Gaa Kaburwo Trans Nzoia branch is divided into two factions on who to support as the running mate of Chris Wamalwa, the Kenya Kwanza Alliance gubernatorial candidate in the cosmopolitan county.
One faction is led by the county chairperson Samuel Arap Maritim while the second one is led by the County Secretary Job Tallam and Kwanza sub-branch chairperson Joel Matelong’.
The Maritim-led faction which is majorly dominated by Cherang’any sub-branch is fronting the name of Teresa Metto who shelved her gubernatorial ambition in favor of the Kiminini Member of Parliament.
But the second faction which has representatives from Endebess, Kwanza, Kiminini, and Cherang’any sub-branches has already fronted the name of educationist Bethuel Kiplagat Kirior to Chris Wamalwa.
In an exclusive interview with Uasin Gishu News, Maritim has rejected the decision taken by the other faction saying it was premature to do so before involving all Kalenjin communities under the umbrella of the Myoot Council of elders.
“I am not partisan to what was done by my county Secretary and other elders. Their decision was rushed because we were still doing consultations on who among the three candidates is the best to be Chris Wamalwa’s running mate,” Maritim said.
His sentiments were echoed by Cherang’any sub-branch chairperson William Sawe who asked Chris Wamalwa not to pick Kirior until the community settles on one candidate amicably.
The elders threatened to take a different political direction if their concerns are not addressed by the gubernatorial candidate.
“There’s still a wide window for us. If he (Chris) picks Kirior, we can as well explore other avenues where our interests will be taken care of,” Sawe said.
They said politically, Chris Wamalwa is their son-in-law and their culture does not allow them to visit his homestead, instead, the MP should visit them to court their daughter.
On their part, the Tallam-led group said Kirior was the choice of the entire community and it is not possible to revert back elders’ blessings.
“What we have done is not possible to undo, once blessings have been given out it is done,” Tallam said.
Joel Matelong’ said the whole community will vote for Kenya Kwanza Alliance candidates in Trans Nzoia to the last man.
Former high school teacher Simon Mutai who was one of the people fronted to be the running mate of Chris Wamalwa stepped down in favor of Teresa Metto.
This comes two weeks before the closure of the window required by the law for submission of the President’s and Governors’ running mates.
Chris Wamalwa with be facing former Rift Valley Regional Commissioner George Natembeya in the race to succeed Patrick Khaemba who is serving his last term.