I’m ready to face you at the ballot, Ngirici tells Waiguru
Mercy Mwai and KNA
The battle for Kirinyaga governorship pitting three ladies from the region has gone a notch higher after the Woman Rep Purity Ngirici told off Governor Anne Waiguru, for recently declaring her intent to join United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party allied to Deputy President William Ruto.
Ngirici who has declared interest in the seat and will face off with Waiguru and Narc Kenya leader Martha Karua, said she is ready for a political duel with Waiguru anytime, anywhere.
Waiguru, like Karua, hails from Gichugu while Ngirici is from Kirinyaga Central, which was carved off Ndia constituency.
“I am not afraid of any possible competition from Waiguru, who is still listening to what the ground is saying, when we are already past that level,” she said.
Speaking at Ndia in Kirinyaga West Sub-County during a peace initiative meeting, Ngirici who is touted as a key member of Ruto’s inner circle warned that should UDA ditch her, then she would jump ship as she was not tethered to the party like a goat.
She said she was sure of victory in the governor’s race: “I know how the ground looks like since I am always with the people,” she said.
Her sentiments come two weeks after Waiguru gave the clearest hint yet, that she was about to dump Jubilee for Ruto’s camp; a move that is being seen as a spoiler for Ngirichi who has been the face of UDA and Ruto in Kirinyaga.
While on a tour in the county, Waiguru asked Mwea residents which vehicle they wanted her to join, and when they responded UDA, she said she would go with their wish.
To demonstrate that she was considering joining UDA, Waiguru was last week seen in the company of female lawmakers allied to UDA including Aisha Jumwa (Malindi), Susan Kihika (Nakuru Senator) and Nyeri Woman Rep Rahab Mukami.
“If they question this, I will say that my people directed me to join their party of choice,” Waiguru declared at the meeting.
She added: “I have listened to the ground, they have said I have worked and established major projects that give them money but they have an issue with my presentation, I will do as they wish.”
Waiguru has been a strong supporter of President Uhuru Kenyatta and has been in the forefront pushing for the passage of the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI), which was declared null and void by both the High Court and the Court of Appeal.
During the campaigns for BBI, the Kirinyiga governor who was also leading a women-led BBI campaign known as “Embrace” on several occasions, attacked Ruto and dismissed him saying despite his following in the Mt Kenya region, the Kikuyu would eventually dump him as they are behind Uhuru.
But apart from two ladies fighting it off to fly the UDA flag, it is the entry of Karua, who is now the face of succession politics in Mt Kenya region, that has thrown the ladies back to the drawing board.
Karua who lost to Waiguru in the last election has told the two ladies to be ready for a bruising battle next year.
Apart from the three, other leaders who have declared interest for the seat are Governor Joseph Ndathi and former Finance Minister Njeru Githae.
The supremacy battle between Waiguru and Ngirici escalated last Sunday. This was after Ngirici’s husband accused the county chief of taking down his wife’s billboards in Mwea town.
The standoff saw Mwea town residents block county government officials from pulling down two billboards bearing Ngirici’s image.