Emurua Dikirr Member of Parliament Johana Ngeno has formally quit the bachelors club after exchanging marital vows and wedding rings with the love of his life, Ms Nayianoi Ntutu.
The 45-year-old Kanu MP who is serving a second term in parliament crossed the bridge to the married club at a ceremony full of pomp and colour at Emurua Dikirr Secondary School just a short distance from his home.
People from all walks of life led by Deputy President William Ruto and Orange Democratic Movement leader Raila Odinga arrived at the function aboard helicopters, sports utility vehicles, matatus, motorcycles and hundreds others trekked to the venue to witness what could be dubbed as the wedding of the year.
Political differences were pushed to the back burner with laughter taking over as leaders, friends and family members of the outspoken MP took pot shots at him over the long period he took before finally settling down.
The MP landed at the school grounds in a helicopter escorted by colleagues Oscar Sudi and Nelson Koech before the ceremony presided by Reverend Stephen Ayienda of Baptist Church of Kenya kicked off shortly after 1pm on Saturday.
Mrs Mary Temas, the MP’s mother was perhaps the happiest as she officially received the bride from her parents led by Mr and Mrs Livingstone Ntutu at 1.20pm shortly before the couple exchanged marital vows.
“I had pushed my son to marry over the years but I did not know that the love of his life was out there pursuing education. I am the happiest person today. Welcome to the family my daughter,” Mrs Temas said.
There was an awkward moment when the presiding bishop asked the MP to kiss his wife after exchange of wedding rings and signing their marriage certificate with Mr Ngeno laughing out aloud, sending the crowd into a prolonged laughter.
The bespectacled MP hesitated, looked at the crowd, dignitaries at the dais and family members before stroking the bride and kissing her amidst applause.
There was a light moment when Mr Sudi, who was the best man adjusted the bride’s dress trail, a responsibility reserved for the maid of honour, as the couple signed the marriage certificate.
“People from far and wide have come to witness that after several years of waiting, you have proved yourself a gentleman by getting married. Congratulations my friend,” Mr Ruto said capturing the mood at the function.
“We agreed with Mr Ngeno that I arrive here at 10am, but he arrived a little bit late. I can accept this but but do not be late in the journey to heaven,” Mr Ruto said in the red carpet affair where Energy Cabinet Secretary Charles Keter was the master of ceremony.
Mr Ruto said: “I am happy you can now settle down as a family man. The problems we have with you in the past is now water under the bridge. You are now an elder. Welcome to the married club.”
The DP caused laughter when he told the couple: “The Jubilee administration rolled out a program to foot maternity bills…sasa wewe tia bidii (now work hard).”
Mr Ruto added: “People have voted for you in large numbers. It is now your turn to ensure that in future, the voters will include your own children.”
The icing on the cake in the DP’s message to the couple was that President Uhuru Kenyatta had promised he would host the couple at State House.
Mr Odinga said as a long term friend of the Kanu MP, he had repeatedly brought to his attention the fact that he was getting old and should find himself a wife.
“He looked for me and insisted I must attend his wedding as he had finally found the love of his life. I am happy for him,” Mr Odinga said.
“We want you to ensure your wife has delivered a child every year. There is no need for you to adhere to family planning methods since you married late,” said Ms Sabina Chege.
The leader of majority in the National Assembly Aden Duale said Mr Ngeno had been a senior bachelor in Parliament and that he was difficult to deal with him.
“At least we now know who to call when you give us a rough time in Parliament. Men are tough out there, most are cowards before their wives,” Mr Duale said.
Mr Kipchumba Murkomen, the Senate Majority leader, said insults previously directed at his colleague on his marital status would now come to an end.
“As a relative I have pushed him for a long time to marry, but now I am happy he has crossed the bridge. God’s time is the best time. It was worth waiting for more than 30 years for this beautiful lady you have finally married,” said former Bomet governor Isaac Mr Ruto, who is the Chama Cha Mashinani (CCM) party leader.
“The marriage is very significant because it has cemented the relationship between members of the Kipsigis and Maasai community and we look forward to disputes being sorted out more amicably,” Mr Ruto said, a view shared by Narok Governor Samuel Tunai.
Mr Patrick Ole Ntutu, who is the Chief Administrative Secretary in the Interior ministry and former Senator Stephen Ntutu speaking on behalf of the bride’s family said they had been pushing the MP to marry over the years without knowing that he was eyeing a member of their family.
“I did not know that all along he had been sneaking into the compound running after one of our daughters,” said Mr Stephen amidst laughter.
Mr Tunai said: “I have repeatedly told the MP he had no business lecturing us about leadership as he was single and did not have children. I am happy from today he will understand the meaning of marriage and in future know the pain of a child crying in the middle of the night.”
Cutting of the cake was presided over by Bomet Governor Joyce Laboso who described herself as the MP’s godmother.
Ms Rachel Shebesh, the Public Service CAS said she was forced to cut short her trip at the US to attend the wedding.
“I promised him a long time ago that I would be there to witness the cutting of a cake when he finally decides to be a family man and I am here to do just that,” said Ms Shebesh.