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OKA leaders pledge to lift Western economy

Baringo Senator Gideon Moi, accompanied by ANC leader Musalia Mudavadi, addressing a rally at Bungoma bus terminus, November 26, 2021. [Benjamin Sakwa, Standard]

One Kenya Alliance (OKA) leaders Friday returned to western Kenya with a bag full of goodies.

Amani National Congress (ANC) leader Musalia Mudavadi, Kanu chairman Gideon Moi, Wiper’s Kalonzo Musyoka and Moses Wetang’ula of Ford Kenya took their vote-hunting mission to Bungoma where they held rallies in Webuye, Kanduyi and Posta grounds.

At Webuye, the host, Senator Wetang’ula, said: “We are happy to be here on this important day. As you are aware, OKA constituent parties have all had their national delegates congresses and endorsed us to vie for the presidency.”

He enumerated the problems facing Kenyans and said OKA was focused on solving them.

“The economy is bad and OKA is committed to reviving the economy. We shall revive Nzoia and Mumias sugar companies. OKA will give free education from nursery to secondary school and reduce university fees by putting the money lost through corruption to good use.”

While taking a dig at their political opponents, Wetang’ula said: “OKA will bring peace. We are not like the other two undermining peace in the country.”

Kalonzo urged the warring factions in Ford-K to unite and strengthen the party. He urged residents of western Kenya to rally behind OKA.

“We should stop celebrating thieves. Don’t allow anybody to come here and lie to you again. Kenyans are wiser now,” he said.

Senator Moi drew cheers while urging residents to identify and vote for OKA.

Speaking in Kiswahili after tendering greetings in the local dialect, he said “Wengi watakuja hapa na kusema mengi. Musikize hao na kupima. Wakiwapatia kula, lakini kura ni kwa OKA.” (Many will come here with many stories. Listen to them but make wise choices. Eat whatever they give you but give your vote to OKA).”

Gideon promised that the popular free school milk programme ‘Maziwa ya Nyayo’ will be reintroduced. The OKA government, he added, will cut taxes and improve the economy.

The OKA alliance comprising Kanu, ANC, Wiper and FORD-K is yet to pick a presidential candidate as it traverses the country drumming up support ahead of the 2022 elections.

The alliance’s leaders are upbeat that they stand a better chance of forming the next government.

They have pegged their campaigns on a platform of reforms geared towards jumpstarting the economy and easing the burden of taxation. Improving agriculture also features prominently.

Mudavadi decried rising poverty in western Kenya, saying: “We are number two in Kenya in terms of population and should put those numbers to good use.”

He added: “Our people are suffering after Mumias and Nzoia sugar companies collapsed. OKA will revive the companies and improve agricultural production by giving farmers farm input subsidies.”

“Be steadfast and stand behind OKA. We are tired of being taken for granted,” said Mudavadi.

Bungoma and Trans Nzoia, where OKA leaders will address rallies today, are considered Ford-K strongholds.

Wetang’ula has a wide base of supporters he could draw from to shore up OKA’s votes should the party decide to go it alone and field a presidential candidate against ODM’s Raila Odinga and Deputy President William Ruto on a UDA ticket. However, there are chances OKA could team up with other parties for the 2022 election.

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