Trans Nzoia Governor George Natembeya has downplayed his absence at Sunday’s Azimio rally in his Kitale backyard saying he was “busy” attending to his electorate.
Speaking on Monday, a day after opposition leader Raila Odinga led an Azimio-One Kenya coalition anti-Ruto rally in the county, Mr Natembeya said he had no time to attend rallies as he had an electorate to take care of.
“I was busy yesterday (Sunday) and I couldn’t make it to the rally. I don’t think it’s time for politics now, we should now work for the people,” he stated.
He spoke as Trans Nzoia MCAs came to his defence, following the tongue-lashing he received from the Azimio army, following his decision to snub the Azimio public rally.
The Trans Nzoia governor did not attend the Sunday Azimio rally in Kitale, with his communication team saying he had attended to ”serious county duties.’
Mr Natembeya did not even send his deputy Philomena Kapkoy, forcing Saboti MP Caleb Hamisi to play host to the Azimio brigade, something that earned him serious backlash.
The governor, who was elected on the Democratic Action Party of Kenya (DAP-K) ticket, an Azimio affiliate party, launched renovation works at the Kenyatta Stadium in Kitale on Monday but steered off politics.
He was brief and guarded in his remarks concerning the Sunday snub of the Azimio rally, only stating that he busy fulfilling his campaign promises to the Trans Nzoia electorate.
“I gave my best during the campaign and now it is time to deliver,” he told the electorate that turned up at the launch of the stadium.
On Monday, MCAs drawn from both the political divide defended the governor saying they support his drive to deliver to the Trans Nzoia people, rather than attending political rallies.
Led by majority leader Edwin Koech, they said the Assembly resolved to work together for the benefit of the people.
He urged Mr Natembeya to focus on his development manifesto promises to the people and ignore anyone fighting him.
“We are surprised that leaders from outside (the county) come here and abuse our leader. This is very unfair and uncalled for. We will support our Governor to deliver his development agenda,” he said.
Trans Nzoia County Minority leader, Erick Wafula who is also the Hospital Ward MCA, rubbished Azimio leaders’ threats to Mr Natembeya, saying the country had moved on after the August 2022 General Election.
“We will not allow outsiders to come and threaten our governor. Their public antics will not work here,” said Mr Wafula, a DAP-K party MCA.
Kwanza MP Ferdinand Wanyonyi also promised to support Governor Natembeya to deliver to the Trans Nzoia electorate.
“Governor, we are fully behind you and you should continue to lobby for projects from the national government,” said Mr Wanyonyi.
He urged elected leaders to work together and avoid unnecessary drama, saying that the economy was doing badly because of the former government’s doings and that reviving it demands collective responsibility.
Azimio leaders, during the rally in Kitale town, accused Natembeya of going to bed with the government despite being elected under the Azimio banner.
Led by Narok Senator Ledama ole Kina, former Cabinet Secretary Eugene Wamalwa and Kiminini MP Maurice Kakai, they accused Governor Natembeya of absconding from Azimio functions.
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