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Musician makes history in Kenyan elections

12 March 2013, 17:18 Cheruo Levi Cheptora

David Barasa, the leader of the famous Webuye Juakali Band has made history by being the first well known musician in Kenya to be elected into political office in the just concluded polls.

Barasa won the Kimilili County Ward representative seat on a New Ford Kenya ticket after garnering 2 203 votes against his closest competitor Mwanahamisi Kombo of Ford Kenya who got 1 603 votes.

“It was no walk in the park; many people tried to write me off because of the misconception that music artists are not serious  people, my other colleagues like Ringtone Apoko tried their hand in politics and failed, but I am happy the residents of Kimilili gave me a chance,” an elated Barasa told the media.

Barasa’s award winning Webuye Jua kali band has produced hit songs which have been slogans in different political camps all over the country.

'My Dear Khumbolela Siina’ (which translates to: What do you say my dear?) is an example of one of his popular love songs that has received unprecedented airtime in almost all political rallies.

“That song was been like an anthem in all the major rallies even in Nairobi and in different presidential camps," said Barasa.

‘Mudavadi Kobolaa’ is his other hit song he specifically composed for the Amani coalition presidential candidate.

In the piece, he pleads with Mudavadi to come home and also asks Western Kenya leaders to support his bid.

“It is sad that the Luhya leaders whose names I mentioned in the song disregarded my message; it is not surprising that Mudavadi therefore performed dismally," he laments.

Barasa admitted that his rivals tried to paint him as an outsider in reference to his band name Webuye Jua Kali.

He however disputed the claims by telling the electorate that he only went to Webuye town to look for a living.

The artist said that it is through rubbing shoulders with who's who in Kenya’s political scene that inspired him to go for the elective seat.

He added that composing political songs forced him to do a background check and research on the current and past leaders which further energized his resolve to gun for the seat.

“Singing is just a talent like running or any other, and you have seen an athlete has been elected an MP in Cherangany. Let people not look down upon us; talented people can also be leaders,” he said.

Top on his agenda amongst others, he says was to see that the fast growing town that has witnessed a fair share of insecurity incidences in the recent past is safe and secure.

“I will see to it that street lights are put up in the major streets in Kimilili town and its  environs, and also ensure there is clean running water,” he said.

Will he stop singing or composing hit songs now that he will be busy serving wananchi in his new position?

“Doing music is in blood, I cannot stop doing that. My fans should not be disappointed because I will not stop singing,” Barasa  pointed out.

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