ODM rises from 2017 dust to post impressive returns
Raila Odinga’sOrange Democratic Movement (ODM) has raised its stock, if the numbers it now has in the National Assembly is anything to go by.
In 2017, the party lost many seats from its strongholds, thanks to the sibling rivalry between the defunct National Super Alliance (NASA) coalition.
However, the Orange party seems to have dusted the political mistakes from the 2017 elections to post impressive results in the 2022 polls.
For instance, in 2017, ODM won 13 gubernatorial seats, 13 Senators and 11 Woman Representative positions across the 47 counties while in 2022, the party has increased the number of governors from 13 to 15, retained the same number of Senators and reduced its influence in the Woman Reps posts from 11 to nine 9.
In the National Assembly, ODM got only 59 members elected in 2017 but has increased the number to 73 elected in the August 9 poll.
ODM chairman John Mbadi told People Daily that the party’s success could be attributed to better management of the nomination process of the gubernatorial, senatorial and National Assembly members.
He, however, lamented that there are some electoral areas like Homa Bay, Migori and Siaya where some party officials mismanaged the nomination process, which later cost the party some seats.
Mbadi was categorical some of the officials mismanaged the process by handing party certificates to those who did not win in the nomination process conducted by universal suffrage.
“This time round we managed our nomination processes well in most of the elective seats especially the gubernatorial seats. Although there were disputes, we managed to solve them amicably. It has proven that when we use opinion polls, surveys and issue direct tickets then we reduce the acrimony,” said Mbadi.
He regretted that had the party managed nominations well for the Migori Representative seat and some Homa Bay County Assembly seats, the party would have not lost to independent candidates.
“We must talk candidly about some of the losses we have had as a party. If we use universal suffrage and a candidate has won, he or she should be given the ticket. It is sad that some leaders interfered with the nomination process and they became very arrogant. This must stop,” charged Mbadi.
In Migori County, former nominated MP Dennitah Ghati was handed a ticket against Fatuma Mohammed who went on to win the Woman Representative seat on an independent candidate ticket.
Mbadi now argues had Ghati allowed Fatuma to have the ticket she would have retained her nomination slot for Persons Living with Disability (PWDs), adding that although they prevailed upon some aspirants, their strategies were ignored.
“Ghati has now lost the Woman Rep position and also the nomination slot. If she agreed with our proposal, we could have had Fatuma on an ODM ticket and she would have retained her seat on affirmative action.”
The party’s Secretary General Edwin Sifuna charged that clear channels of communication, planning and strategy improved the statistics for ODM.
Sifuna argued his office created a conducive atmosphere where aspirants could freely air their issues and addressed immediately. “We ran an open door policy and listened to grievances by the aspirants. We also managed the nominations well to a larger extent. We got some seats because we went for popular candidates and looked at the various strategies,” said Sifuna.
ODM gained Wajir, Garissa and Kajiado gubernatorial seats but lost Nyamira, gained Vihiga and Nairobi Senatorial seats but lost Turkana and Busia respectively.
In the constituencies, ODM made inroads in Kisii County winning Bomachoge, Borabu, Nyaribari Masaba, Kitutu Chache South, in Nyamira it got Kitutu Masaba, Borabu, in Kakamega it bagged Lugari, Likuyani, Lurambi, Navakholo, Mumias West, Matungu, Butere, Kwisero and Ikolomani but lost Shinyalu.
In Kajiado, ODM retained Kajiado Central but added Kajiado East and Kajiado South; in Tana River, the party bagged Garsen and Galole while in Wajir it got Wajir West and Wajir South.
In Mandera County, the party got Mandera East and in Garissa it got Lagdera which previously was won by Jubilee candidates.
In Nairobi, it regained Langata, in Kisumu, the Orange party bagged Kisumu Town West, in Migori County it got back Suna West while in Busia, the party gained Teso North but lost Teso South.