Here are the front runners in Ruto’s quest for 2022 running mate
Kakamega governor Wycliffe Oparanya has emerged as one among a host of politicians being touted as Deputy President William Ruto’s likely running mate in the 2022 General elections.
According to Ikolomani lawmaker Bernard Shinali, the 62-year-old is a cool and experienced head and commands respect from a majority in the country.
“In Kakamega we have two million people with one million votes. We’re not going to go separate ways this time round. We’ll negotiate as a bloc so that Mr Oparanya also gets something,” said Shinali, a staunch Ruto supporter.
Oparanya has in the past served as Butere MP and Minister for Planning during former President Mwai Kibaki’s regime.
He has yet to officially comment on this matter even though he has consistently hinted he isn’t yet done in politics even as he serves his second and final term as governor.
Crucially, the veteran politician may have to decamp from the opposition’s ODM party – where he serves as the vice chairman – to stand a chance of working with Ruto who belongs to the Jubilee Party.
Still, he faces stiff competition from other politicians with an eye in the second most powerful office in Kenya, especially from Central Kenya, if indeed he harbours ambition of becoming Ruto’s running mate.
Others who have been touted as Ruto’s potential running mates are Murang’a Governor Mwangi wa Iria, Tharaka Nithi Governor Kindiki Kithure and Kirinyaga governor Anne Waiguru.
The names of Bungoma Senator Moses Wetangula, former Kiambu governor William Kabogo, Cabinet Secretaries Peter Munya and Mwangi Kiunjuri have also been mentioned.