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From campus politics to the national stage

NAIROBI SENATOR JOHNSON SAKAJA

Sakaja’s political career started when he was 27 after he was appointed chairman of The National Alliance (TNA).

This position accorded him the opportunity to sit with former President Mwai Kibaki.

At a young age, his political career took off on a high note when he started working with political bigwigs.

Looking back, he says his dream started at the University of Nairobi, when he was selected to pursue civil engineering but he wanted actuarial science.

He was later elected vice chair of the Actuarial Students Association at UoN and later Sonu Chairperson.

Speaking with the Star during an interview, Sakaja said the spirit of organisation was instilled in him in campus.

“In university leadership, I realised that if you are organised, you can be recognised and once you are recognised, you can make changes without causing issues among students,” he said.

Sakaja, whose light shone when he was elected Nairobi Senator, has proved to be a man of the people.

“It had a big impact on how immediately after that I got into leadership and I got involved in national issues at a very young age,” he said of his campus politics.

He became confident and broke all barriers of fear in him. He recently joined the race for Nairobi governor in 2022. 

“Many times, you would imagine a President or ministers have all these things figured out, but they are human,” he said.

As the capital city’s senator, Sakaja has been on the frontline in defending and sponsoring bills that affect citizens.

They include: Prompt Payment Bill and the Start-Up Bill, which were recently passed in Parliament.

Others are the Pandemic Management and Response Bill and the County Government Retirement Scheme Bill.

“I remember in the revenue debate, I took a firm stand because of those days that I realised you can be given something and stand for it despite intimidation, arrests and looking like you are going against the government,” he said.

His experience as vice-chair and Sonu chair made him dauntless that he stands for what he wants without fear of the aftermath.

“When others are grilled, they decide to give up, but because of being a student leader, it made me fearless. I don’t fear intimidation or prosecution,” he said.

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