The outgoing Governor of Kakamega County Bwana Wycliffe Oparanya is now the latest entrant in the Butere Parliamentary seat that has attracted many aspirants.
Oparanya wants to capture the seat when his term expires in 2022 in a scheme that many second term governors are considering as a bridge to cabinet positions in the next regime if BBI is adopted.
His handlers wanted him to go for the little known Likuyani seat or the new constituency that will be split from Lurambi if BBI is passed but Bukusu factor made it a second choice.
Likuyani is currently represented by Enock Kibukuchy of Wetangula’s but the the near cosmopolitan constituency is largely Bukusu.
Losing Likuyani would mean losing grip of Luhya that he must hold firmly as he plots to ascend to the national politics where he has been touted as a possible candidate for deputy prime minister position in Raila Odinga’s government.
Oparanya is the current chairman of the council of governors, a position that has put him a step above other leaders like Musalia Mudavadi who is in the cold and Moses Wetang’ula who was stripped of Senate’s minority leader position after fall out with ODM.
The governor also had mid day dreams of becoming Raila Odinga’s running mate but the political mathematics has adversely shifted to an extent that even his presidential ambitions were washed away. one time declared he would go for the presidency.
But Oparanya faces an uphill task of neutralizing the William Ruto factor is with Butere MP Tindi Mwale and Mumias East MP Benjamin Washiali working round the clock to sell DP’s candidature in the vote-rich western region.
Mwale beat the then incumbent MP Andrew Toboso as he won the seat on an ANC ticket. He is expected to defend the seat on a ‘Tangatanga’ ticket but Oparanya wants to buy all the aspirants to go unopposed.
The Kakamega boss becomes the third governor to reveal his intention to go for a parliamentary seat after Turkana’s Josphat Nanok and Siaya’s Cornel Rasanga, all elected on ODM tickets.