Former Rarieda Member of Parliament Nicholas Gumbo and ex-police spokesperson Charles Owino have ditched the ODM party ahead of the party’s primaries.
The duo defected to the United Democratic Movement (UDM) associated with Mandera Governor Ali Roba on Tuesday to launch a joint Siaya County gubernatorial bid.
In a deal reached between the two leaders, Owino shelved his bid for the Siaya governor seat to join forces with Gumbo who will fly the UDM flag in the August 9 General Election. Owino will be the former legislator’s running mate.
The UDM duo will face off with Siaya Senator James Orengo who is poised to clinch the ODM ticket.
Owino, who resigned from the public service in February, was among a number of aspirants who were eyeing the Raila Odinga-led party ticket. He officially joined the Orange party early this month.
Besides Orengo other aspirants are former banker Otieno Okanja, former United Nations official Bella Akinyi and advocate George Mugoye Mbeya.
The aspirants are seeking to succeed Governor Cornel Rasanga Amoth whose tenure will come to an end in August after serving for two terms.
It remains to be seen how the ODM party will solve the political matrix, either through issuance of direct ticket, consensus, use of a delegates system or universal suffrage to pick its flag bearer.