By Albert Nyakundi Amenya
Deputy President Dr. William Ruto has unveiled Bishop Margaret Wanjiru aka BMW as UDA’s Nairobi Gubernatorial candidate in 2022.
The nomination of Former Starehe MP Bishop Margaret Wanjiru to fly the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) Party ticket for Nairobi Governor has completely turned the landscape of the race for this most coveted gubernatorial seat in Kenya in 2022. Indeed, Bishop Wanjiru’s nomination by UDA in January 2021 is credited as the single move that forced President Uhuru Kenyatta and Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga to look for alternatives to avoid a By-election as it was clear she was unbeatable.
The consensus is that Bishop Margaret Wanjiru is unstoppable now that she is enjoying the support of Deputy President William Ruto, Governor Mike Sonko and UDA Chairman Sen. Johnstone Muthama tilts all the odds in favour to win the seat by landslide. The runaway popularity of the UDA Party since it became clear it was Ruto’s preferred party is also a boon for Bishop Wanjiru who has been leading its aggressive grassroots members drive in the City.
Similar to Ruto who is the only declared Presidential Candidate for President, Bishop Wanjiru is reaping the benefit of head start as the only Nairobi Gubernatorial candidate who is in the field with a nomination certificate and already soliciting for support and votes. Bishop Margaret Wanjiru also has the advantage that she is not new to Nairobi Countywide politics having vied in 2013 for Nairobi Senator and come a very strong second and demonstrated capacity to draw support from all sides of the political divide.
ODM is already alive to the fact that Bishop Margaret Wanjiru will win over a significant number of their supporters who have traditionally supported her since she joined politics in 2007. In fact, most ODM members readily and openly admit supporting the Bishop in her bid and it is rumoured that may be why Westlands MP Hon Tim Wanyonyi withdrew from the Nairobi Governor race to focus on reclaiming his MP seat. Now, the choice of who to face Hon Bishop Margaret Wanjiru has become a very big challenge.
Many have been quick to pose the question: How will any newcomer succeed where Kidero failed as an incumbent, that is beating a candidate support by Mt. Kenya and Kambas in Nairobi? The former Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero has since declared his interest in vying for Homabay Governor giving Nairobi County a wide berth. As ODM is shopping for who will dare Hon Margaret Wanjiru, her popularity keeps souring as she surges forward and makes inroads towards assuming the City Hall Office in 2022.
So far, it is clear Bishop Margaret Wanjiru enjoys the support of all Mt. Kenya communities’ resident in Nairobi as a complete block. The Bishop is also assured the support of all Kamba in Nairobi who appear determined to use the opportunity to punish those they blame for Sonko’s impeachment. Not to mention the support of the growing number of Kalenjin and Kisii in Nairobi as well as a big number of Luhyias and Luos and members of minority communities who identify with her proven bottom up approach.
All eyes in Nairobi City are now on Hon Bishop Margaret Wanjiru watching her every move as she gears to unveil her manifesto and running mate. There is no doubt she is keeping her cards close to her chest until she knows who she will be expected to beat to become the 3rd Governor of Nairobi. She said: “Our agenda of Bottom-Up Approach is to empower traders through financial assistance and training in order to grow businesses and improve the standard of living for our people.”