Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Alliance has settled on Former National Assembly speaker Kemneth Marende to battle Bungoma Senator elect Moses Wetangula in the race for the National Assembly speaker in the next parliament.
The Raila led coalition has written to all of its elected MPs to back Marende when the House convenes next week for its first sitting.
According to Azimio Secretary General Junet Mohamed they settled on Marende after wide consultations.
“Azimio coalition has decided to front Marende as our candidate for the National Assembly speaker. We have decided to go for someone who has been tried and tested, someone who understands the operations of Parliament.
“We are going to formally communicate this to all our members by Monday. All the coalition partners including Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka are in agreement.” Junet told the Sunday Nation.
Wiper will nominate a candidate for deputy speaker of the National Assembly, while the Senate speaker will come from the Coast or the pastoralist communities.
William Ruto’s Kenya Kwanza Alliance has nominated Moses Wetangula for the National Assembly speaker and the immediate former Kilifi governor Amason Kingi, for the Senate speaker.
Legally, Azimio holds a narrow majority over Kenya Kwanza, 167-158 but politically Kenya Kwanza has more members after Dr. Ruto successfully courted Azimio members and independents.
United Democratic Alliance (UDA) will occupy six of the twelve nomination slots, ODM will take four, Jubilee one, and Wiper one. This results in six for both Kenya Kwanza and Azimio, resulting in 173 for Azimio and 164 for Kenya Kwanza.
Kenneth Marende has stated that if the alliance puts up a united front, they will win. He claimed that the decision to have him run for the assembly seat had been communicated to him.
“If you ask me my level of confidence in terms of competency and capacity to serve, I am 100 per cent. I have served in the office before and the jury is out there on my performance,” he said.
“Azimio has numbers to win the seat if they hold together. The moment you are at 175 out of 349 members, it is game shot. Those defecting are engaging in an illegality that I don’t subscribe to.” He stated.