Trans Nzoia Governor George Natembeya has distanced himself from Azimio coalition’s calls for mass action and rebellion against Kenya Kwanza administration, making it clear that he will not be part of opposition’s countrywide demonstrations.
Natembeya is coming clean two weeks after snubbing opposition leader Raila Odinga’s Azimio rally in Kitale town, Trans Nzoia County, which was attended by his DAP-K party leader Eugene Wamalwa.
The governor is warming up to President William Ruto, and is expected to meet the Head of State on Wednesday at State House Nairobi. He has vowed to to work with the government of the day saying it is time to serve his people and he has no time for protest rallies, Azimio chaos and petty politics.
“I am not going to waste time on the politics of other people’s agenda. I want to work with the national government so that our people receive development,” he said.
Natembeya will lead a delegation of elected and grassroots leaders from Trans Nzoia to meet President Ruto and discuss development of the region as he makes his statement clear on defying Mzee Odinga’s push for mass action and demonstrations.
He gave Odinga and Ms Martha Karua’s rally a wide berth last month with his communication team alleging that he was attending to serious county duties. The former Rift Valley regional commissioner did not even send his deputy Philomena Kapkoy, forcing Saboti MP Caleb Hamisi to play host to the Azimio brigade.
He argues that Trans Nzoia county has been branded an opposition zone for many years and denied opportunity to work with the government and speed up its development efforts.
“Our leaders have been in opposition for many years. Look at a constituency like Saboti that has been led by many great leaders, but does not even have a single tarmac road,” Natembeya said.
The governor said he will not stick with the opposition and become a stumbling block to development of his county, adding that financial allocation from the Exchequer supports sustainable development, and he wants more for Trans Nzoia county.
Natembeya decried the high poverty levels in Trans Nzoia county and the larger Western region as he called on President William Ruto to revive industries in the region to create employment and support livelihoods.
“Our people are suffering for staying in the opposition and we can’t allow it anymore. Let us work with the President to push for our development agenda. It is Raila who taught us about cooperating with the national government and that is why you see Kisumu shining in development and you think it is Nyong’o’s work?” he posed.
Members of the county assembly led by Majority Leader Edwin Koech, said the assembly has resolved to work with the Executive for the benefit of the people as he urged Governor Natembeya to focus on his development manifesto for the people of Trans Nzoia.
Out of the eight Azimio-controlled counties that have hosted anti-government rallies since January, at least five host governors have skipped Odinga meetings as they claim to be busy serving their people.
The governors include Natembeya, Wavinya Ndeti (Machakos), Paul Otuoma (Busia), Amos Nyaribo (Nyamira) and Wilber Otichilo(Vihiga).