Vihiga senator George Khaniri has officially divorced ODM leader Raila Odinga and is now courting ANC boss Musalia Mudavadi, Weekly Citizen has information Khaniri won his seat on ANC ticket and immediately started abandoning Mudavadi, wining and dining with Raila. He was among the politicians who accompanied Raila in a chopper to pay a visit to the ailing president Daniel Arap Moi at his Kabarak residence. By then the talk was, Khaniri was eyeing ODM ticket for Vihiga governorship after current governor Wilbur Otichillo was said to have fallen out with ODM top luminaries. During a funeral in Mbale where Otichillo was heckled sometimes back attended by Mudavadi, and Khaniri, the senator claimed he was working with Mudavadi and backing his presidency.
Khaniri has also been skipping Luhya leaders’ functions organized by Cotu boss Francis Atwoli. He is said to be against the naming of Kakamega county governor Wycliffe Oparanya and Devolution CS Eugene Wamalwa as Luhya community leaders. Oparanya has declared he will be vying for the presidency in the 2022 presidential election asking Mudavadi and his Ford-Kenya counterpart Moses Wetangula to pave way for him. While at Ebunangwe Resort in Vihiga county meeting elders from Vihiga county in Emuhaya constituency with Wamalwa, Oparanya questioned which side Khaniri was. Former speaker Kenneth Marende was present at the function. Word has it that Marende is likely to be forced to run on ODM ticket for the Vihiga governorship race 2022, as Khaniri is noncommittal.
ODM strategists say that Ottichilo is unpopular and want Marende to galvanize the populous Bunyore two constituencies votes and get swing votes from other areas. Khaniri gameplan is to run on ANC ticket and prevail upon Mudavadi to convince Sabatia MP Alfred Agoi eyeing governorship also on ANC to step down. Agoi is a frontrunner for the seat after former governor Moses Akaranga fortunes dwindled and is facing criminal investigation over miscue of funds when governor. Khaniri’s argument is that Mudavadi is likely to land presidency in a deal with deputy president William Ruto and being a Maragoli like Agoi, he needs to back an outsider for the governorship in the county.
Another aspirant for the governor seat is Francis Ominde, former county secretary. Weekly Citizen has information that aware that a section in ODM is fighting him, Otichillo has been attending BBI and Oparanya meetings to cement his relationship with Raila. He said he is ready to navigate the deep waters of the presidential race and play national politics not community political league. Wetang’ula while addressing mourners during the burial of Luanda MP Chris Omulele’s mother the late reverend Sophia Monyo, dismissed Oparanya and Wamalwa team, saying it is being used to divide Luhyas. Wetang’ula cautioned leaders from Western from being used to split the house of Mulembe. Nominated MP Godfrey Osotsi asked ANC to call elections or seek an extension of the party election by Registrar of Political Parties.