Kilifi Women Rep aspirant refutes reports labeling her as Kingi’s running mate

Kilifi county women rep independent candidate Juliet Riziki (right) with Incumbent governor Amason Kingi during a past event. She has refuted claims that she is the planning to be Kingi's running mate. PHOTO: DAVID NGUMBAO.

Kilifi, KENYA: Independent candidate for Kilifi Women Representative seat Juliet Riziki has refuted reports ubiquitous in Kilifi social media group pages linking her to  incumbent Kilifi Governor Amason Kingi’s running mate.

In an interview with Baraka FM on Monday, Riziki who was defeated in the last ODM nominations by Kibarani Member of County Assembly Getrude Mbeyu, said she has not even been approached by the governor neither had she held any talks with him in regards to the post.

“I was called by the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) Deputy Chairman Teddy Mwambire after a post fully with a designed poster surfaced online and sent to different Kilifi social media platforms asserting I was the chosen running mate for Mr Kingi,” Said Riziki.

“I was dazed to see the posters and some analysis on how the governor was planning to settle on me,” she said.

Riziki said she is set to go independent and rubbished the rumors saying they are designed to tarnish her name.

“People took the advantage of my silence to cook rumors,” Riziki added.

“I have been quiet for a while picking my campaign team as I go for the women’s seat and I have neither engaged the governor nor made any posters for the same,” she said.

She said it is the work of her opponents who want to portray her as having abandoned her quest for the Women Representative seat.

“I highly suspect that these were some opponents who wanted to divert attention so that people see me as having abandoned the seat I am vying for,” Riziki reiterated.

Her sentiments come in the wake of increasing suspicion that Kingi who is yet to make public his running mate, might have settled on his tourism County executive  Edmund Saburi to be his deputy in the August 8, polls.

Saburi comes from Rabai Sub County, the same region Kingi picked his 2013 running mate Kenneth Kamto who has since left the ODM party after a fallout with the governor.

However, governor Kingi has remained tight lipped over the claims, even as time runs out for all the gubernatorial candidates to pick their running mates and forward their names to IEBC.

Kamto ditched ODM and opted for the same seat with Jubilee hopeful Gideon Mung’aro. Kadu Asili’s Kazungu Kambi, picked Maureen Mwangovya as the running mate as Devolution Party of Kenya (DPK)’s Michael Tinga and Wiper Party’s Gabriel Katana have also not named their running mates.