Former Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya has agreed to support Senator Boni Khalwale’s ambition to run for the county’s governorship in the 2027 general elections.
Speaking after a meeting at Oparanya’s home on Sunday, January 14, the two leaders announced that they had buried their differences and will work together going forward.
“We have decided to bury any differences that people thought we had, so we work together for the benefit of Kakamega people and Luhya as a whole.
I have told him to consult with his coalition and the president and I will also do the same to make sure that we are together come 2027,” said Oparanya.
Oparanya Will Support Me- Khalwale
Khalwale said President William Ruto is aware of his ambitions adding that Oparanya also agreed to support his gubernatorial bid.
“I visited President William Ruto and shared my aspirations with him, and he gave me his blessing. Today, I shared the same with my brother who is the most senior politician in Kakamega, and he also promised me his support.
Together we will reach out to other shades of leadership in Kakamega to share our resolve with them,’ stated Dr Khalwale.
Khalwale said they will reach out to all leaders in Kakamega including Governor Fernandes Barasa to promote the county’s development agenda.
“I would like to encourage Kenyans to see the positive side of this initiative, today we have said with governor Oparanya that there can be nothing that can make us not to agree to work together for the sake of the development of Kakamega,” he said.
The Senator defended Oparanya and urged the investigative agencies to stop intimidating him.
“We don’t want Oparanya to be intimidated. Let things be done professionally,” said Khalwale.
Oparanya and Khalwale served the devolved unit between 2013 and 2017 as governor and senator, respectively.
Khalwale – Malala Rivalry
In the 2022 general election, Oparanya supported his then deputy Fernandes Barasa.
Oparanya’s decision was met with hostility from other aspirants including former Deputy Governor Philip Kutima and former Shinyalu MP Justus Mugali.
On the contrary, the Kenya Kwanza Alliance settled for Cleophas Malala while Khalwale was pushed to vie for senatorial seat.
Malala lost to Barasa and President Ruto appointed him the UDA Secretary General.
However, the rivalry between Khalwale and Malala intensified even after the elections as on October 9, Khalwale filed a petition to remove Malala as UDA SG.
He accused Malala of being involved in unlawful appointments of the regional and county managers.
Also, he accused Malala of favoring the managers without considering the interests of the other members of the party.
Likewise, the Kakamega Senator accused Malala of overstepping his mandate and electing his friends, thereby compromising the National Elections board which is an independent structure within the party.