As the race to replace the late Kibra Mp Hon. Ken Okoth gets hot, every party is trying to put its best foot forward to spoil the party for ODM. The ruling Jubilee party ‘settled’on former soccer star turned betting maestro McDonald Mariga. Mariga was selected after 16 other aspirants were paid to quit.
Mariga candidature is attributed to DP William Ruto who has already begun campaigns to capture presidency in 2022. Ruto in his quest leaves no stone unturned and takes every opportunity as a perfect one to battle his would be rival, former PM RailaOdinga and he utilizes every opportunity to challenge Odinga very well.
This was well crafted, they first peddled lies that former Harambee Stars skipper Dennis Oliech was also running despite being from Dagoreti North. Oliech – Mariga face off would be an interesting battle eliciting a lot of public reaction, the lie about it alone gave Mariga a quick push into murky political murky waters.
Mariga got back to fame by starring as Joy Muthengi’s boyfriend in a gambling company’s ad. Joy was ta household name famous a radio/tv presenter in a teenagers show 10/10 with Citizen’s Willis Raburu. Only a shell was left of Mariga , the former midfielder was unattached, playing in village tourneys and attending house parties in remote Spain.
DP Ruto orchestrating Mariga candidature is a ploy to‘measure’ his strength against RailaOdinga. Kibra is Odinga’s and ODM stronghold but Ruto got its piece after his candidate won the neighbouring Langata seat in 2017. Kibra is part of the former Langata constituency that was held by RailaOdinga from 1992 to 2013.
It is predominantly Luo occupied with good number of Luhyas and Nubians. Having a Luhya candidate is most likely to divide votes that an ODM candidate would rely on, Mariga with roots from western Kenya is best placed to execute that and must have been paid well for the pending job.
It’s nothing about being part of the youth or seeking an opportunity to give back to the society that Mariga never remembered during his hey days as a soccer star. It’s even in doubt if Mariga was born or raised up in Kibra. He was from Ziwani/Kariokor but now Kibra for silly political reasons.
Mariga was 23 years old for almost five years; he still claims to be part of the youth over a decade after then Intermilan coach Mourhino benched him for being too old to perform among youthful players. With lies, may be about age, place of birth and his poor public address Mariga has begun on a wrong foot. His candidature is dead on arrival.
None of the aspirants in the Kibra race nears the stature of the late Ken Okoth. Ken was a born leader, composed, fluent and eloquent. Such a great leader deserves a continuation of his legacy not projects like Mariga that set stage for ethnical contest and not ideas.
Ruto has a stunning win over their party’s (Jubilee Party) secretary general Raphael Tuju who at some point dismissed Mariga’s candidature as rumors. Since the handshake, Jubilee has steered off by elections in areas considered ODM stronghold. Mariga being a ‘project’ also saves JP the headache that comes with shambolic nominations. ODM is instead focusing on raking big from aspirants, opportunity to seek ODM party ticket goes for 270k.