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Inside Azimio’s Plan to Eliminate ‘Weak’ Candidates

Azimio la Umoja leaders led by Raila Odinga

Azimio la Umoja leaders led by Raila Odinga

The Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition Party is set to eliminate weak candidates in areas with more than two contestants using opinion polls in a strategy to win a majority of seats in Parliament in the August 9 elections.

The coalition’s National Executive Council (NEC) will meet this week to adopt a divisive plan which aims to keep only popular aspirants. 

According to NEC Chairman Wycliffe Oparanya, they will receive a report from pollsters, organizations, and people they hired to gauge the popularity of the candidates.

“By the end of the month, we shall know which candidates [will] fly our flag where and in which positions,” Oparanya said. 

The Raila led coalition is targeting Nairobi, Western, Eastern, Coast and parts of Rift Valley and Mt Kenya regions, where Kenya Kwanza Alliance is likely to win several seats. 

According to Oparanya, if elected, Raila Odinga will need a majority in both Houses and the CoG to effectively administer the government.

In order to eliminate weak candidates, Azimio will also rely on information from national government officials and the National Intelligence Service.

However some Azimio candidates claim that the pressure from coalition rivals puts their chances of defeating Kenya Kwanza foes in jeopardy.

“This business of two candidates for Azimio cannot work. We must have one candidate for every position. Let’s make the painful decision today,” said Narok Senator Ledama. 

Although Oparanya stated that unpopular candidates would be asked to resign, it remains to be seen how the coalition will deal with incumbents who are viewed as unpopular.

Azimio running mate Martha Karua on Wednesday supported Oparanya’s remarks, stating that the party will implement the opinion poll strategy to prevent losing to its competitors.

“The selection of the candidates and popularity study will be fair and everyone will be involved. Our intention is not to bar anyone from contesting but we have to get the strongest candidate to ensure that we win most of the seats,” She said.

Also Read:Why President Uhuru’s Hand in Azimio is Giving Ruto Camp Sleepless Nights

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