As the echoes of the hotly contested 2022 election began to settle, Kenya found itself navigating a political landscape that continued to captivate the nation.
From Members of Parliament to woman representatives, governors, and senators, the political arena boasted a cadre of leaders whose prominence dominated headlines throughout the year.
Here are a few notable figures who remained newsmakers for the better part of the year.
Mumias MP Peter Salasya
Elected as an independent candidate in Mumias East Constituency, MP Peter Salasya gained attention for his courageous campaign against established political players in 2022.
Throughout 2023, Salasya remained in the limelight, particularly for his unwavering advocacy on issues plaguing the sugar sector.
Mumias East Member of Parliament Peter Salasya.
His outspoken stance, especially against Kakamega Governor Fernandes Barasa, drew praise as the electorate and observers recognised him for championing the cause of sugar farmers.
Salasya’s simplicity and commitment to the common man have endeared him to the citizens, earning him widespread popularity.
Nominated Senator Gloria Orwoba
Nominated Senator Gloria Orwoba, affiliated with the United Democratic Alliance (UDA), sparked numerous conversations in 2023 due to her unconventional style of championing women’s rights.
Orwoba’s approach, including wearing clothes with simulated blood stains to highlight menstrual hygiene, garnered attention.
Nominated Senator Gloria Orwoba addressing the media after being kicked out of the Senate on June 3, 2023.
However, her suspension from the Senate for making false allegations against a clerk at Parliament stirred controversy.
Despite challenges, Orwoba’s presence remained impactful, prompting discussions around gender issues and advocacy within the Senate.
Meru Governor Kawira Mwangaza
Elected as the first woman Governor of Meru County in 2022, Governor Kawira Mwangaza continued to be a central figure in Kenyan politics in 2023.
Overcoming impeachment attempts and facing controversies, Governor Mwangaza demonstrated resilience and political acumen.
Meru Governor Kawira Mwangaza appears before the Senate Select Committee during her impeachment motion on December 27, 2022.
Her initiative “okolea kana ka Meru” faced admiration and opposition, leading to conflicts with Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki.
Notably, she became the first governor to survive impeachment twice within a span of 1 year, navigating political battles and standing firm against allegations of nepotism and favouritism.
Her steadfastness earned her support from women politicians across party lines.
MP Kimani Kuria
Molo MP Kimani Kuria, the chairperson of the Departmental Committee on Finance, Planning & Trade in the National Assembly played a key role in ensuring the passage of the Finance Act, which the government identified as crucial to its agenda.
Kuria, a close ally of President William Ruto, was also key in advancing the ruling party’s agenda on the floor of the house.
Despite being one of the youngest MPs in UDA, he was still handed the chairmanship of the Finance Committee which was a vote of confidence in his abilities.
He has been tipped to grow in stature, heading into the future.
Molo MP Kimani Kuria during a Church Service on December 17, 2022
Kikuyu MP Kimani Ichung’wah
Kikuyu Member of Parliament and Majority Leader Kimani Ichung’wah made headlines for his consistent support for the Kenya Kwanza government.
Ichung’wah backed plans by President William Ruto to introduce the housing levy enshrined in the Finance Act and when it flopped he tabled the Affordable Housing Bill to introduce the levy constitutionally.
The MP was also in support of privatising several government parastatals including the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC) to increase the revenue collected by the government.
“This is a prime location that can generate more for the government if leased,” he stated in November.
Besides being vocal in Parliament, Ichung’wah also led the National Dialogue Committee (NADCO) alongside former Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka from Azimio.
A photo of the Leader of the Majority in the National Assembly Kimani Ichung’wah in his office at Parliament buildings in November 2022.