The Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party surprise withdrawal from the upcoming Wajir West by-election continues to elicit reactions in the political circles.
The Raila Odinga led party shockingly withdrew its candidature, saying it was reciprocating to Jubilee Party's move not to field candidates in the recently concluded Embakasi South and Ugenya by-elections.
However, ODM’s decision to quit the by-election could be easily interpreted as sensing defeat.
After being embarrassed in Ugenya and Embakasi South mini-polls, the ODM might have seen it wise to avoid another defeat owing to the fact that Jubilee party enjoys majority support in Wajir.
Its withdrawal now leaves Jubilee's candidate, Ahmed Kolosh as the favourite to clinch the victory.
Jubilee is likely to ride on its dominance and the resources it has to clinch the by-election.
However, it might not be easy for the ruling party in the upcoming mini-polls as it seems on paper.
Kolosh is likely to face stiff competition from Ibrahim Sheikh Mohamud.
Mohamud is contesting the by-election on a KANU ticket.
The KANU candidate petitioned Kolosh's election that saw his victory in the 2017 general election nullified by the Supreme Court.
Mohamud is said to enjoy grass root support and is likely to give Kolosh a run for his money.
Other candidates cleared by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) to contest in the by-election are Daud Mohamed (Ford Kenya) and Abbas Nunow (Agano).