A section of Sabaot community professionals and elders in Trans Nzoia County has said they do not recognize and support Philomena Kapkor who was nominated by the former Rift Valley Regional Commissioner George Natembeya as his running mate.
Addressing the media in Kitale town, the members of the second most populous community in Trans Nzoia County said Natembeya went against the wishes and expectations of the elders and professionals who had presented three names to him for consideration.
The professionals’ secretary General Abraham Kiboi said although the community appreciates Natembeya’s choice, the announcement caught them by surprise.
“Natembeya, it is your prerogative to choose whoever you want to work with, that is your constitutional right. But I have to tell you this clearly; this community feels deprived, it feels isolated and the community is jilted, it feels cheated, we are actually insecure. The appointment itself sends a bad test in the mouth of the community,” Kiboi said.
Kiboi questioned how Natembeya, who is eyeing to succeed Governor Patrick Khaemba, settled on Kapkor, a least known banker.
“Bwana Natembeya we are calling you to come out clearly to explain the logic behind your selection, there were those candidates who we had fronted to you. What made you not choose one of them?” he asked.
Wycliffe Kaibei, the political affairs taskforce chairperson of the community in Trans Nzoia County said the community is still deliberating their next course of action and that they are ready to support any other gubernatorial that will take care of their interests.
“We are somehow disappointed that all the names of the people we forwarded for consideration were thrashed. We shall not bow to anybody; our votes matter because we are the second most populous community in this county. If you think you can do without us, let us work with whoever is prepared to work with us,” Kaibei said.
Maria Rotich said although the community is yet to take a decision on the candidate to support, they are reconsidering their position in terms of supporting Natembeya.
“As Sabaot women, we are alighting from Natembeya’s vehicle. We are asking Mama Milcah Psiwa to give us the way forward because she is the one who introduced us to Natembeya,” Rotich said.
Pastor Musa Kibet Ndiema said the former administrator shortchanged the community and violated the promise he made to them.
“Natembeya you must understand that you cannot gamble with our community. We fully supported your candidature but we have realized you wanted our votes with nothing in return,” he said.
Peter Chemorit, Sabaot Council of Elders vice chairperson hinted that the community is likely to support Kenya Kwanza Alliance gubernatorial candidate Chris Wamalwa.
“We are ready to work for Kenya Kwanza Alliance; we the council of elders believes what Kenya Kwanza Principals have been saying that Kenya Kwanza has a place for all Kenyans. At the opportune moment, we shall advise our community the political route to take.”
The community had fronted the names of former water and environment Chief Officer in the County government of Trans Nzoia John Meng’wa, former Water Chief Officer in the County government of West Pokot and Pilot Stanley Kirui.