Ruto woos NARC party leader Charity Ngilu
President William Ruto’s United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party has appeared to reach out to NARC party leader Charity Ngilu.
Speaking at an event where he formally received former Kenya Africa National Union (KANU) UDA secretary general Cleophas Malala said he will welcome Ngilu ‘with open arms’ should an opportunity at a working relationship present itself.
“Our intention is not to sabotage any political party,” explained Malala.
“Rather, we aim to promote our own party. With numerous political parties in the country, we are not soliciting for other parties, but rather for their members. We welcome members from other parties to join our party if they choose to do so. Our objective is to attract individuals to our party based on their personal choice, as this is what democracy entails. Therefore, political parties continue to exist, and people have the right to choose which party they want to join, even if the NARC party leader wants to join we welcome her,” said Malala.
Ngilu, the Narc party leader, boasts significant exposure in the Kenyan political terrain having worked closely with Presidents Mwai Kibaki and Uhuru Kenyatta.
Her political career commenced in earnest when she unsuccessfully vied for the presidency in 1997 and lost to then-President Daniel Arap Moi.
She served as Minister in the Ministries of Health, and then Ministry for Water and Irrigation between 2008 to 2013.
She also served as Cabinet Secretary for Land, Housing, and Urban Development from 2013 until 2015 under President Kenyatta before the two fell out.
Ngilu was elected Kitui governor in 2017 after defeating Julius Malombe and becoming one of three elected women governors.
Even though she had been cleared by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commision (IEBC), Ngilu elected not to defend her gubernatorial seat in 2022 and instead support Mr Raila Odinga’s gubernatorial bid.
She later withdraw her candidature in favor of Julius Malombe of Wiper Party after Mr Odinga publicly promised her a Cabinet slot.
She has kept a low profile since Mr Odinga’s defeat in the August 2022 polls and is yet to be seen at the Azimio mass action rallies and campaigns.
With Alfred Mutua part of President Ruto’s team, Ngilu’s possibly entry could held solidify his support in the Ukambani region that largely stood with Kalonzo Musyoka in the past three general elections held in 2013, 2017, and 2022.