Seasoned politicians who have shelved their political ambitions to support presidential candidates

By , K24 Digital
On Tue, 5 Jul, 2022 10:00 | 3 mins read
Muranga Woman Representative with ODM leader Raila Odinga at a past function PHOTO/Sabina Chege/Facebook

Several seasoned politicians hit the headlines after they opted out of various races in a country where politicians would rather die trying to enter public office than quit.

The said politicians shelved their aspirations to concentrate on the hotly contested presidential race or avoid humiliating defeats at the ballot.

The list includes sitting Members of Parliament, Governors, Senators, Woman Representatives and a host of aspirants for several elective seats.

Here is a list of some of the politicians;

1. Benjamin Washiali

Mumias East MP Benjamin Washiali announced his exit from politics in January 2022. Washiali, a third-term MP, stated that he would not be defending his parliamentary seat in the August polls.

The MP said that it was high time he gave local politics a break to deliver the presidency to Ruto.

"I will not be vying as a Member of Parliament Mumias East. I will dedicate all my energy and resources to the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party and the election of the 5th President William Samoei Ruto," he said in a statement.

Politician Benjamin Washiali
Mumias East MP Benjamin Washiali. PHOTO/File

2. Kithure Kindiki

Tharaka Nithi Senator Kithure Kindiki announced in May 2022 that he would not defend his seat or vie for a political position in the August polls.

The former Senate Deputy Speaker made the announcement after losing the coveted Kenya Kwanza running mate position to Mathira MP Rigathi Gachagua.

Tharaka Nithi Senator Kithure Kindiki. PHOTO/Courtesy

He, however, averred that he would continue campaigning for Deputy President William Ruto.

"I have decided to take a break from active politics starting August 10. After soul-searching, I have decided to remain in UDA and the Kenya Kwanza Alliance. I have pledged my total commitment to support Kenya Kwanza running mate Rigathi Gachagua and our party leader DP William Ruto.

"I will continue to play my role in the campaign and subordinate myself to the leadership of the party, including my competitor, who is now the deputy president-designate," he remarked.

3. Charity Ngilu

In what caught many by surprise, Kitui governor Charity Ngilu announced in June 2022 that she had withdrawn her re-election bid in favour of Wiper's candidate Julius Malombe.

Azimio la Umoja presidential flagbearer Raila Odinga stated that Ngilu shelved her aspiration to take up other roles in the government they will form if they bag a win in the August polls.

Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu PHOTO/Courtesy

4. Sabina Chege

Murang'a Woman Representative Sabina Chege abandoned her gubernatorial bid in April 2022 to focus her energies on pushing for a Raila Odinga win in the presidential race.

The second-term parliamentarian said she had done a lot of soul searching and had come up with the position that the decision added value to her prospects in leadership.

She noted that her decision not to contest for a seat in Muranga was partly influenced by the resistance she faced from local politicians after throwing her weight behind Azimio's presidential flagbearer Raila Odinga.

"Most of my supporters adamantly refused to listen to my justification of making and sticking to that choice …They did not embrace that decision. Yet I was not coerced to do so and did not do it out of sycophancy for President Uhuru Kenyatta," she said.

Murang’a Woman Rep Sabina Chege. PHOTO/Courtesy

5. John Mbadi

Suba South Member of Parliament John Mbadi withdrew from the Homabay gubernatorial race in March 2022.

The Orange Democratic Movement party chairman announced that he was shifting his focus on Raila's presidential bid and a nationwide bid to have ODM bag as many seats as possible.

"I have today withdrawn my bid from the Homabay County gubernatorial race. I will henceforth place more effort in the Azimio presidential bid and the nationwide bid to have ODM secure as many seats as possible," Mbadi said.

John Mbadi
National Assembly Minority Leader John Mbadi. PHOTO/Courtesy