While ODM’s candidate for Kisumu gubernatorial election Prof. Peter Anyang’ Nyong’o did not win fairly but ‘played dirty’, he has spent the post-nomination period reaching out to people who long felt the Kisumu County under incumbent governor Jack Ranguma had been totally mismanaged.
Nyong’o appeals to voters who feel Kisumu needs a different direction to prosper, and has launched a progressive manifesto to buttress his bid as an alternative to Ranguma.
The Economics and Political Science professor has been aided in part by the totally mediocre campaign that Ranguma is running, where key campaigners are still on a looting spree.
Like with other incumbents facing tough re-election races, Ranguma’s misfortune lies in part on the incompetent coteries around him, which continue to feed the Nyong’o campaign with political fodder it needs to run roughshod over an already underwhelming incumbent.
Bad advice saw Ranguma, running as an independent candidate, snub a debate organized for all Kisumu gubernatorial contestants which many residents are now saying was the final nail on Ranguma’s re-election bid.
The accusation is that Ranguma avoided accountability.
While Rungama is banking on his populous Kano clan, it remains to be seen if this alone can propel him to victory. Nyong’o on the other is making his candidature about ‘everyone’ feeling at home in Kisumu.
Apart from banking on the ODM Party machine, whose grassroots support remain high in Kisumu County, Prof. Nyong’o is seen as being capable to reign in runaway graft and rent-seeking, two conspicuous features of Ranguma’s first five years.
There is also a feeling that Prof. Nyong’o will be a critical cog, nationally, in entrenching devolution because of his experience and seniority among the next cohort of governors.
But as they say, all politics is local, Nyong’o is furiously campaigning foremost to lead Kisumu County.