Raila’s daughter Rosemary Odinga officially joins elective politics

Raila’s daughter Rosemary Odinga officially joins elective politics

The Coalition for Reforms and Democracy (CORD) leader, Raila Odinga’s daughter, Rosemary Odinga, has officially announced her entrance into elective politics.

Ms Odinga declared that she would be contesting for the Kibra Parliamentary seat in the August polls on an Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) ticket.

Rosemary, who made the declaration on Saturday, January 21 in Kibra, said she is ready to serve as the Member of Parliament in an area that his father represented for 20 years.

Raila’s daughter was accompanied by several CORD leaders including Kakamega Senator, Dr Bonny Khalwale and his Homa Bay counterpart, Moses Kajwang, among others who warned the Jubilee government against rigging the August 8 elections.

Rosemary has in the recent past been accompanying her father in his political tours around the country.

Born on August 19, 1977, Rosemary is the second child of former Prime Minister Raila Odinga. She is an entrepreneur, an advocate for alternative agriculture and proponent of social equality.

She is known for being the only snail farmer in East Africa.

Her siblings are the late Castrol Fidel Odinga, Winnie Odinga and Odinga Jr.

Rosemary is an advocate for equality to give citizens a sense of parity in accessing public services. Since June 2015 , she has been  the patron of Key Empowerment Foundation Kenya, where she has been at the forefront of facilitating youth and women apply for birth certificates and ID cards to enable them fully access government services.

She is the Executive Director of Raila Odinga Center (ROC), a foundation that focuses on providing education scholarships in East Africa, training young leaders and developing youth sports talents.

She is also a Member of the Global Chinese Business Future Leaders Club and Global Peace Foundation.

She is actively involved in boys’ mentor ship programs and has served as the Patron of the Upper Hill School Rugby Union Club.

Just moments after her declaration, former Raila aide, Eliud Owalo, who is also eyeing the same post, castigated the move terming it as “unparalleled sycophancy”.

In a strongly worded statement to newsrooms, Owalo, who deemed Rosemary’s declaration as Raila’s ploy to reclaim Kibra, asked the former Prime Minister to choose between Kibra or the Presidency further insisting that he cannot get both.

“The Juvenile misplaced excitement and unparalleled Sycophancy exhibited in Kibra Constituency today in relation to the imposed Parliamentary Candidature of Rosemary Odinga may as well turn out to be Raila Odinga’s Waterloo in his quest for the Presidency,” read the statement in part.

In June 2015, Owalo announced that he will vie for the Kibra Parliamentary seat in 2017.

“I have a dream and strategic intent to facilitate the alleviation of the challenges that the people of Kibra face, including but not limited to insecurity, housing, roads, water and sanitation.”

“I will maintain my eyes on the ball and will not be distracted by the side shows of who is likely to run against me.”

Kibra will  be a highly contested seat with Ken Okoth, the sitting MP, being accused by a section of ODM leaders as being a Jubilee mole.

In August last year, the long awaited launch of Raila Education Centre, in Kibra Constituency turned chaotic after a section of youth booed Okoth alleging that he was a traitor working closely with the Jubilee government.