The Democratic Party (DP), has cleared its candidate for the upcoming Garissa Senate by-election after cutting ties with the ruling Jubilee Party.
DP’s Secretary-General Jacob Haji said that the party has cleared Shaffi Aden Ibrahim, to face off with Jubilee’s Abdikadir Abdul Haji and Suleiman Gedi of Thirdway Alliance.
The Democratic Party founded by retired President Mwai Kibaki 30 years ago, is now ready to roar again after years of being moribund.
The SG said his party’s partnership with Jubilee ended in 2017 after the repeat presidential election.
“We no longer have a coalition agreement with Jubilee Party so we are free to field candidates. We are waiting for the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) to clear our candidate for Garissa,” said Haji.
The county has 163,350 registered voters, according to the 2017 IEBC register, and 381 polling stations.
The data shows that Garissa Township Constituency has 54,291 registered voters, Balambala (20,145), Lagdera (20,547), Dadaab (25,762), Fafi (19,883) and Ijara (22,722) respectively.
Mr Aden Ibrahim is a businessman in Garissa town and Lagdera Constituency.
According to Haji, DP is confident it will win the contest despite the huge following Jubilee enjoys from regional leaders including Garissa Governor Ali Korane.
Garissa Town MP Aden Duale, Garissa ward representatives, Deputy President William Ruto, Kenya African National Union (KANU) and a host of MPs have thrown their weight behind Abdul (Jubilee).
The Democratic Party has only one MP in the National Assembly Tharaka lawmaker Murugara Gitonga.
The party has been trying to revamp and rebrand itself ahead of the 2022 General Election.
Recently, former Transport Principal Secretary Irungu Nyakera resigned as the party’s deputy leader and a member, after falling out with its top brass.
Nyakera, in a letter addressed to secretary-general and copied to the Registrar of Political Parties, said he resigned after realizing that DP has “owners” who are not ready to embrace change.
Nyakera claimed some of the party’s leaders were primarily interested in seeking State appointments for themselves and their kin, and were therefore avoiding actions and pronouncements that could make DP appear anti-government.
“DP Chairman Esau Kioni has issued several statements supporting government programmes that had not even been endorsed by the National Executive Committee (NEC), such as the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI),” said Nyakera.
Nyakera who joined the party in 2019 is said to be eyeing the Murang’a governor seat.