Ruto party ropes in aspirants in membership drive

Tuesday, September 21st, 2021 02:00 | By
UDA secretary general Veronica Maina. PHOTO/Courtesy

Wycliff Kipsang

Deputy President William Ruto’s United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party has embarked on a rigorous countrywide campaign to register new members ahead of the 2022 General Election. 

 People Daily yesterday established that aspirants seeking various political seats have been tasked with ensuring online registration of new members in their jurisdictions. 

 “We’ve intensified registration of new members for our party which has gained traction countrywide.

We want to solidify this support base ahead of 2022 polls,” said Susan Chesiyna, Baringo County Woman Rep seat aspirant.  

UDA officials led by secretary general Veronica Maina have been touring the counties meeting aspirants for various elective seats in next year’s polls.  

 “UDA now  has huge presence across the country because our hustler narrative resonates well with the common mwananchi.

Our strategy is to ensure that the bottom-up approach works,” said Maina. 

 UDA enjoys support in the Rift Valley counties. The DP has also been making inroads in Mt Kenya counties. 

 An analysis of the 2019 census data shows that by 2022, the country might have between three million and four million new voters, depending on how politicians running for various seats will convince young people to register as voters.

 The battleground will be in Nairobi, which will still have the largest number of people aged 18 and above at three million, up from 2.8 million.

 The next largest vote-rich county will be Kiambu with 1.6 million people eligible for voting, an increase of 165,754 from the 2019 tally.

 According to Eldoret-based political commentator and strategist Leonard Kulei, most aspirants know that clinching the party’s ticket will be a sure bet to winning the seats in Ruto’s strongholds.  

No endorsement

People Daily established that many aspirants were banking on the Deputy President William Ruto - allied party ticket to battle it out with their opponents in 2022. 

 “This explains why many aspirants are seeking the DP’s attention by attending his meetings,” said Kulei. 

 The DP is on record saying that he will not endorse aspirants for any seat.   

“It will be up to the people to decide. We will only come to hand over the party’s ticket to the winners,” the DP said when he met aspirants from Kajiado county at his Karen home last week. 

 As at December 2018, there were 25.4 million Kenyans aged 18 and above.  This number is expected to surge by an additional four million by 2022, if you factor in those who were aged 16 during the August 2019 census. 

Currently, there are 19.6 million registered voters.

 UDA will battle it out in the vote-rich Rift Valley with Kanu which has also been making inroads in the region.   

Counties to watch include Baringo, Elgeyo-Marakwet, Nandi, West Pokot, Trans-Nzoia, Uasin Gishu, Kericho, Bomet, Narok and Turkana. 

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