He undoubtedly stands out as the voice of the voiceless and a fierce critic of the government in the gold belt Sub County of Nyatike, sometimes facing it head on even with senior authorities.
Felix Okwanyo, the Macalder Kanyarwanda ward representative is a first time MCA who was elected on an ODM ticket and has stood to champion the party’s agenda at every slightest opportunity.
Though seemingly a political novice, the outspoken legislator is curving a figure of a human right’s defender, a budding political figure and a fearless orator.
Despite flooring the former acting speaker George Duro to clinch the ward seat on an Orange Democratic Party ticket, the first term MCA has been the talk of Nyatike when he pulled a one man show during the recent antigovernment demos.
His personality would further came into play when told off the Trade and Industrialization cabinet secretary Moses Kuria over his incessant onslaught and constant bad mouthing of Azimio leader Raila Odinga.
The CS was on a development tour in Nyatike where he commissioned a multi million Industrial park.
And without mincing words, the vocal MCA called on Mr Kuria “respect Baba Raila Odinga” who he described as the father of devolution.
“I want to ask you Mr Kuria to accord our party leader the respect he deserves. Don’t insult him because such forms of impertinence do not auger well with us. Learn to respect our leaders,” the MCA said, sparking unease in the packed crowd where Mr Kuria was in attendance.
Such audacity has for a long time never been witnessed from a local leader who is barely a year in office.
What baffles many including his colleagues at the assembly is the gusto; the passion and the zeal by which he defends not only the ODM party but his electorates.
The government recently gazetted over 20,000 acres of land within his ward as a forest and within a fort night, Mr Okwanyo had rallied the entire ward members mostly comprising of artisanal miners to denounce the motive.
While the gazette notice intended to carve the huge swathe of land into conservation, Mr Okwanyo argued that the scheme was purely orchestrated by cartels to exploit copper and gold deposits which has for years been the source of livelihood of the Macalder residents.
“We will not allow some powerful government officials to connive with cartels and take our ancestral land. I will do anything at my disposal to ensure our people get what rightfully belongs to them,” he told the press at a public Baraza held at Osiri trading Center.
Political pundits assert that owing to his short stint in politics and with the current zeal, the vocal legislator is set to move to greater heights.
Mr Dansam Ouma, a political scientist asserts that the MCA is on the right politiocal track owing to his aggressive nature.
“In Kenyan politics, bravery and open mindedness is the scion to a better political path. No naïve politician has made in throughout the country’s political history. For Okwanyo, it’s just a tip of the iceberg and I can see him going far.”Dansam Ouma, political pundit
Should the trend continue, he says, then Mr Okwanyo may pull a surprise to many going forward.