Despite calls from Luhya leaders to work together in unity and peace that dominated the 27th anniversary of the late Masinde Muliro, it seems it’s realization is still a bit off and not easily achievable for now. The function was also meant to bring together leaders from the region in a show of unity, but the absence of some leaders raised eyebrows.
Notable supporters of Deputy President William Ruto were among those who were absent, and they didn’t send any reasons in advance for their absenteeism. Some of the leaders who never showed up are Webuye West MP Dan Wanyama, Bumula MP Mwambu Mabonga, Sirisia MP John Waluke, Kimilili MP Didmus Barasa among others.
Leaders who sent apologies through Trans Nzoia Governor Patrick Khaemba for missing the commemoration included Kwanza MP Ferdinand Wanyonyi, Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya, Vihiga Governor Wilber Ottichilo.
The absence of some leaders didn’t go down well with Musalia Mudavadi, Devolution CS Eugene Wamalwa, Senator Moses Wetangula, who both said they had invited the leaders but didn’t know why they hadn’t shown up. “We can’t behave as if we are in a competition. The leaders who are missing at this function were invited but have decided to go and dance at Sugoi,” said Mudavadi.
His sentiment was echoed by Bungoma Senator Wetangula and CS Eugene, “We are calling upon you to make informed decisions by rejecting these leaders in the ballot, who aren’t here with us.”
Fomrer Webuye MP Musikari Kombo had also urged leaders from the Western region to be selfless and work for the unity of the region, without bragging as the masterminds behind a successful unity. “I call upon our leaders to avoid politics but instead work together in realization of this unity that is elusive,” said Kombo. The issue of Luhya unity is littered with uncertainties, and even though leaders speak about it in public fora with pride, it remains to be seen if they can put their glaring political differences and personal targets aside to embrace the path.