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Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Mombasa Muslim clerics defend Duale over incitement claims

CIPK national treasurer Sheikh Hassan Omar (c) flanked by vice chair Sheikh Hassan Suleiman (l) and organising secretary Sheikh Mohamed Khalifa at their Mwembe Tayari offices, January 7, 2017. /BRIAN OTIENO
CIPK national treasurer Sheikh Hassan Omar (c) flanked by vice chair Sheikh Hassan Suleiman (l) and organising secretary Sheikh Mohamed Khalifa at their Mwembe Tayari offices, January 7, 2017. /BRIAN OTIENO

Muslim clerics have defended of National Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale after calls to arrest the MP over an audio clip believed to be of him inciting youths against Kamba voters emerged on social media.

In the two minute clip, a person is heard asking a group youths to drive Kambas away and prevent them from registering as voters.

Duale on Thursday dismissed the clip as "concocted propaganda", adding that it was corrupted. He recorded a statement with the DCI on Friday over the same.

Former National Assembly deputy Speaker Farah Maalim called for Duale's arrest and termed the MP a criminal.

[AUDIO] Duale dismisses audio of incitement against Kamba voters as concocted propaganda

More on this: Duale belongs in jail, Farah Maalim says after alleged incitement remarks

But the imams said allegations raised in the clip are real and should be investigated.

"Already, there are over 4,000 voters who have been imported from Nairobi, Ukambani and other regions to vote for some aspirants who are not confident of victory," CIPK national treasurer Sheikh Hassan Omar said on Saturday.

He said there are plans by Duale's rivals to import voters from other regions to vote him out of his Garissa Town parliamentary seat.

Omar accused Maalim of wanting to cause chaos by hiding behind the Kamba community because of his Wiper party membership.

"Maalim and his counterparts went to Wiper to look for the votes of Kambas living in Garissa," he added.

Sheikh Hassan Suleiman asked IEBC to verify the details of everyone who wants to be registered to ensure no voter is imported from other regions.

"If this does not happen, there may be chaos in the elections on August 8," he said.

IEBC has said the second Mass Voter Registration Campaign begins on January 16 and will go on until February 14.

Article 83 of the constitution states that a person qualifies for registration as a voter at elections or referenda if they are adult citizens (18 years and above), are of sound mind and have not been convicted of an election offence during the preceding five years.

It furthers states that a citizen who qualifies for registration as a voter shall be registered at only one registration centre.

IEBC Coast region coordinator Albert Gogo was not available for comment as he was conducting a training when he was contacted by the Star.

But his predecessor Amina Soud had in March 2016 told the Star the law allows voter transfer so long as they are not induced by anyone to transfer.

“Ferrying people is illegal but if the people transfer out of their own will then it is okay,” said Soud.

She however said the law has loopholes that are being exploited by politicians.

“The lawmakers made the laws for themselves. They are tricky people,” she noted.

The commission, she said, has appealed for amendment of the Elections Act to remove such ambiguous clauses that can be manipulated by politicians.

More on this: Jubilee and Cord in mass transfer of votes to Nairobi


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