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Waiguru's veiled indication on her imminent departure form the pro-handshake camp supporting President Uhuru Kenyatta and former Prime Minister Raila Odinga came after weeks of speculation on her political party of choice/FILE

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Waiguru signals UDA shift saying she will respect voters’ demands

NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 22 – Governor Anne Waiguru has signaled an imminent shift to Deputy President William Ruto-led United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party in an impromptu address to a section of Kirinyaga residents.

Addressing her supporters on Wednesday, Waiguru said she will respect and follow the demands of her voters as the country heads to the August 2022 general elections.

“I stated that I will listen to what Kirinyaga residents demand of me. I will follow and do what the electorates want me to do, and that is what will determine my political direction as I vie for re-elections,” said Waiguru amid cheers from her supporters.

“Which party do you want me to move to?” she posed as the crowd replied chanting “UDA.”

Waiguru’s veiled indication on her imminent departure form the pro-handshake camp supporting President Uhuru Kenyatta and former Prime Minister Raila Odinga came after weeks of speculation on her political party of choice.

She had earlier indicated that she’ll make her decision based on the demands of her supporters, adding that their opinions will shape her political direction.

Waiguru further indicated that it would be difficult for her to defend her seat under the governing Jubilee Party based on the current state of politics in the country and Mt Kenya region.

The first-term Governor who served as Devolution Cabinet Secretary in President Kenyatta’s first Cabinet had accused powerful individuals in government of using State machinery to intimidate her from taking a political position of choice.

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On September 4, Waiguru was summoned by the Kenya’s anti-corruption watch dog, Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) over an alleged payment of Sh52 million which was allocated by County Assembly for a pending bill dating back to 2010.

Waiguru said that the summons was politically motivated adding that it came following her comments on the fall of the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) constitutional amendment Bill.

The Kirinyaga governor also blamed her woes on some political rivals and some parties within the government keen to unseat her in the 2022 elections.

Waiguru also backtracked from supporting Odinga quest for presidency denying she ever endorced him.

Speaking after a two-day retreat in Laikipia county, Waiguru said her engagements with other national leaders were only consultative and that they had settled on none.

“There has been speculation that we are leaning towards Raila Odinga, that is not true. In fact, what we are doing is consultations so whoever we think will articulate our issues is the one we will back,” she said on August 21.

Her remarks in the company of her Kiambu counterpart James Nyoro, Murang’a Woman Representative Sabina Chege, Ndaragwa MP Jeremiah Kioni and former Nairobi County Speaker Beatrice Erachi came a day after the Court of Appeal upheld the nullification of the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) constitution amendment process which she’d vouched for.

The Kirinyaga Governor had, following the Court of Appeal ruling, called for “serious introspection on the political way forward.”

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