Senator Mike Sonko’s quest to be Nairobi governor is gaining ground as inch closer to the electioneering period. Word in the corridors of power and the high streets of political haven indicate top statehouse operatives have been tasked to help identify a possible running mate for Mike Sonko in order to offer Nairobi the better alternative than the incumbent Evans Kidero.
Deputy President was quoted swearing at a church function that Jubilee MUST WIN Nairobi governor seat come rain come sunshine. Well, Statehouse operatives are burning midnight oil to make this a reality knowing very well that it will be almost impossible to remove Sonko from the race without disastrous consequences.
Here are some of the candidates being considered and believed would ensure the Jubilee Sonko ticket is a slum dunk:
Dennis Kariuki Waweru
The underwhelming Dagoretti South MP and establishment candidate is up and running for governor. His campaign seems to have never taken off despite efforts to bring it to the public. With nothing remarkable or outstanding about him so far, he does not inspire anything in the masses that can be said to add value to the Sonko ticket. A touchy political greenhorn, he is unlikely to be a good team player least of all with Sonko. he seems to value himself beyond his reach and would be little beyond his money save for Maina Kamanda. While he could represent the establishment and Kikuyu interest, he would have a fall out immediately after elections and Nairobi would be subjected to total political deadlock soon thereafter. Dennis Kariuki, without an outstanding political name, stature or clout would be a disastrous running mate to Sonko.
Jimnah has been quiet publicly but loud under the scenes. He has met several candidates including Sonko and offered them a deal they cant refuse. Completely obsessed with his vision for the city, Jimnah is calculating how he can this time implement his vision as number two at city hall. His name recognition, political history, age, experience, money and the confidence and balance he would bring to Sonko would almost create the perfect ticket. Jimnah appeals and would take care of the elite, middle class and the Kikuyu interest at the same time. Sonko would definitely respect Jimnah and though they may not become friends, they would very easily have a functional working relationship. It is a balanced, sound ticket if Jubilee is ever going to get one. It would thrill the masses as well and send Kidero to the cleaners before cock crow.
In many ways, Wanjiru mirrors Sonko. They are cut from the same cloth though Sonko got more inches than the good Bishop. They are very similar to add anything to each other both coming from the same background of the hustle to beat all odds and emerge as city kingpins. They are rough and would get into each other’s way immediately, often competing as none would want to be second to the other. It’s a ticket that would look too ghetto to appeal far beyond city stadium. Margaret wouldn’t appeal to the elite or Kikuyu establishment either and will most likely not get their endorsement. It is a bad ticket in any way.
The original Mike Sonko, or rather, when Simon Mbugua grows up, he wants to be Mike Sonko. Simon Mbugua introduced us to the real Eastlands style of business and politics. Often jocular, brash, generous and simple at the same time, he pioneered what Sonko has perfected. His reach beyond Church Army is however contestable with many believing he was actually retired by the Kikuyu business class in Kamukunji who prefer the more stable approach Yusuf brings as opposed to the unpredictability and volatility that Simon brought. If they rejected him at Kamukunji, they’re unlikely to recommend him for Deputy Governor.
Ibrahim Yussuf aka “Johnny”
Johnny rode to prominence in city politics on the back of a camel. It seems it was the wrong animal for the city since he has struggled to find a seat in the city beyond the camel’s back. He is however a suave player, a wheeler dealer who is very convincing and played a major role in Jimnah Mbaru’s ticket last time bringing in a substantial number of the 52 thousand votes Jimnah got. A well grounded man, Johnny however brings almost nothing new to the table for Sonko. Sonko has already locked in the Muslim vote and therefore would be better using Johnny elsewhere.
Fwamba NC Fwamba
The essential Bukusu man and Eugene Wamalwa’s man on the ground in city politics is making headway for himself in the city. After canvassing the ground and the establishment, he has risen as the enforcer for Eugene in the city and is now the go to man for anyone looking for Eugene. In the vent that Eugene is not on the Nairobi ticket, every likelihood is that Fwamba will hold brief for Eugene and the Jubilee Luhya wing in Nairobi. Sonko could consider him for running mate quickly before Waweru does though it seems Waweru has co-opted the other minority Luhya communities into his campaign in complete disregard to Jubilee politics protocol.
Milly Omanga is going to be the next political revelation for city politics. An amiable girl who comes out as very aggressive and strategic, Milly has wowed the political establishment with her campaign for the Women Rep’s position. She has gone out in broad smiles and deep pockets and built a name for herself. She also represents a very pragmatic community, the Kisii who would come out en masse to very easily support a ticket where she has a stake. Her suitability as Sonko’s deputy is however in doubt as she would very easily be consumed by Sonko’s theatrics and power and disappear into oblivion in the same way Jonathan Mueke has done.
All in all, it is about time Sonko now properly established himself in such a way that he can gain the confidence of the elite and the establishment as he has already bagged the popular mass vote. Its time he started looking gubernatorial and one thing he could do is establish a core team of five from the list above and power himself to City hall with the confidence of a winner and a team player.
Additional analysis by Nzioka O