Former Harambee Stars Player McDonald Mariga with his supporters after submitting his papers at the Jubilee Party Offices. www.businesstoday.co.ke
Former Harambee Stars Player McDonald Mariga with his supporters after submitting his papers at the Jubilee Party Offices. [Photo/Nairobi News - Twitter]

Former Harambee Stars Captain McDonald Mariga has confirmed his interest in becoming the next Member of Parliament for Kibra Constituency.

The Former Kenyan International presented his papers to the Jubilee Party for consideration to run for the Kibra parliamentary seat. The Kibra MP seat fell vacant following the death of Ken Okoth.

Speaking to journalists at the venue, Mariga dismissed allegations that his entry to the race was prompted by a senior Jubilee politician. The retired Footballer said that he has grown up in Kibra and wants to give back to the community.

“Nimekuwa mkazi huko nimeishi Karanja so I know kila kitu huku I just want to give back to the community I know what they go through (I have been a resident here. I have lived in Karanja so I know everything about this place. I just wat to give back to the community…)”, said Mariga.

It had been earlier alleged that the Deputy President’s camp favourites Mariga’s candidature as they feel he is a strong competitor. They claimed that the party led by Raphael Tuju plot to field a weak candidate to help Raila Odinga’s ODM candidate to win the elections.

Ruto and former Kakamega Senator Boni Khalwale were said to have approached Mariga and asked him to run for the seat left vacant following the death of Ken Okoth but the football star was yet to respond to the request. The footballer has denied all this.

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Mariga is a retired footballer who was the first Kenyan to play in and win the UEFA Champions League. He won it when he was playing for Jose Mourinho’s Inter Milan. The former Kenyan International is currently a brand ambassador for betting company Betin Kenya.

The Kibra seat has attracted many individuals from different parties ever since it was made vacant.
Former Raila Odinga aide Eliud Owalo was last week unveiled as Musalia Mudavadi-led Amani National Congress (ANC) party’s candidate in the race while Eng. Khamisi Butichi will fly the Ford Kenya party’s flag.

The Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party will on September 7 hold its nominations which will see 11 aspirants who have since been cleared by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) go head-to-head.

Among them include popular DJ Kriss Darlin (Chris Odhiambo), Dagoretti High School Principal Peter Orero, ODM National Youth Coordinator Benson Musungu as well as late MP Ken Okoth’s brother Imran Okoth.

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Kevin Namunwa is a senior reporter for Business Today. Email at [email protected]

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