August 9

Otiende Amollo steps down from National Assembly Deputy Speaker race

Wednesday, September 7th, 2022 15:55 | By
Rarieda MP Otiende Amollo. PHOTO/File
Rarieda MP Otiende Amollo. PHOTO/File

Rarieda Member of Parliament Otiende Amollo has stepped down in favour of Farah Maalim in the National Assembly Deputy Speaker position race.

In a tweet on Wednesday, September 7, Amollo said he made the decision in the interest of the Azimio coalition.

"Deputy Speaker; I had expressed interest for Deputy Speaker NA. In the interest of our coalition and collegiality, I withdraw in favour of Hon Farah Maalim for Deputy Speaker NA. Thank you all who supported me," he wrote on Twitter.

Race for National Assembly, Senate Speaker

The National Assembly and the Senate will on Thursday, September 7 become theatres of political contests when President-elect William Ruto’s Kenya Kwanza Alliance will face off with the Opposition Azimio-One Kenya coalition in the battle to elect Speakers for both Houses.

The elections — the second order of business once the Houses open for the 13th session — are likely to trigger acrimonious exchanges on the floors of the respective Houses given the razor-thin differences in the numbers of the two coalitions.

Otiende Amollo when he picked his nomination papers for the Deputy Speaker position at the National Assembly on Tuesday, September 6, 2022.

The battle comes less than a week after Monday’s Supreme Court ruling in which the seven judges upheld the declaration of Ruto as President-elect. The judges also threw out the petition filed by Azimio’s Raila Odinga, who finished second in the race.

Within hours of the ruling, President Uhuru Kenyatta published two Kenya Gazette notices convening the two Houses, which will have only three businesses tomorrow; the swearing-in of the legislators, the election of the respective Speakers and the election of Deputy Speakers.

By yesterday, 19 individuals had applied for the position of the Speaker of the National Assembly while another 17 had expressed interest in the Senate position.

Kenya Kwanza is fronting Bungoma Senator Moses Wetang’ula for National Assembly Speaker while Wiper party leader Kalonzo Musyoka will be the Azimio candidate.

Whoever wins the seat will become the third most powerful man in the Executive after the President and Deputy President.

In the Senate, Kenya Kwanza made last-minute changes by nominating former Mombasa Senator Hassan Omar Hassan to replace former Kilifi Governor Amason Kingi as its preferred candidate.

At the weekend, while on a tour of Bungoma, Ruto indicated that Kenya Kwanza would reserve the seat for a candidate from the Coast to foster regional balance. Omar lost last week in the race to succeed Hassan Joho as Mombasa governor after he was defeated by Azimio’s Abdulswamad Sharrif Nassir.

A former Speaker of the National Assembly, Kenneth Marende, has been picked as the Azimio nominee for Senate Speaker.

Farah Maalim of Wiper, an Azimio affiliate, has applied for the position of Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly. He will, among others, face of with Gladys Shollei, the Kenya Kwanza candidate.

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