The Kiambaa by-election is now looking like the next battlefront between warring factions within the hustler umbrella.
As the ecstasy of their unexpected and spectacular win in the Juja by-election over the Jubilee candidate during the Tuesday poll begins to wear off, some new realities that the tanga tanga brigade might not have foreseen have started setting in. With this, dangers of new battle lines being drawn are getting more and more real.
For some time now, there have been unconfirmed reports of infighting within the central Kenya wing of Tanga Tanga between a group allied to Mathira MP Rigathi Gachagua and which wants to see him chosen as Ruto’s running mate, and another one that is said to favour former Agriculture CS Mwangi Kiunjuri.
However, with the steady string of victories that Moses Kuria appears to be gathering under his People’s Empowerment Party (PEP), the scramble for the running mate’s position has now gotten wider.
During an interview on KTN with Sophia Wanuna, Rigathi Gachagua seemed to repeatedly pour cold water on Kuria’s PEP, continuously downplaying the role that Moses Kuria played in the entire outcome.
Responding to a question by Wanuna about the motivation behind the vote in Mt. Kenya and whether it was in fact not so much a vote in their favour but rather a protest vote, Rigathi surprisingly agreed. He said that the vote wasn’t really because they had convincing manifestos that swayed the people, but rather, was to spite the current leadership
As for the win in Juja, Rigathi was more unequivocal and direct. Mentioning Kuria’s party by name, he said that the Juja outcome had nothing to do with PEP, but rather, the hustler movement. He said that the populace identified with the entire hustler movement as a whole, and not an individual party.
Yesterday, the Rigathi Gachagua faction presented Njuguna Wanjiku as the UDA candidate in the Kiambaa by-election, and also the Hustler movement candidate. In the press conference, the faction also attacked Moses Kuria for intending to field a PEP candidate in Kiambaa, yet they supported him in the recently concluded Juja by-election.