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September 23, 2017

Raila gains ground in vote-rich Rift Valley

Raila addressing residents of Eldoret during his visit in June last year./FILE
Raila addressing residents of Eldoret during his visit in June last year./FILE

NASA presidential flagbearer Raila Odinga has rapidly gained ground in the Rift Valley after being named the opposition nominee.

A Radio Africa Group poll shows the opposition chief’s ratings have improved steadily, eating into President Uhuru Kenyatta’s grip on the vote-rich region. The latest poll shows the onslaught on JP by Bomet Governor Isaac Rutto is bearing fruit. Rutto is a member of the NASA Pentagon.

“No Kenyan will support a regime which has completely made life unbearable,” Homa Bay Senator Moses Kajwang said, commenting on the poll.

If the election were held today, Raila would get 28 per cent against Uhuru’s 71 per cent in Bomet.

In Trans Nzoia, Uhuru has 41 per cent, Raila 30, while 29 per cent are undecided.

The opposition chief has 33 per cent in Narok, Uhuru 61 per cent, while six per cent are undecided.

Raila and Uhuru are at 23 and 61 per cent in Nakuru. Only six per cent are undecided. Raila is, however, doing badly in Nandi at seven per cent, as Uhuru enjoys 90 per cent support.

In Kajiado, Raila has 21 per cent against Uhuru’s 74.

In Kericho, Uhuru and Raila are at 75 and 16. In Uasin Gishu, Uhuru is at 64 per cent and Raila at 23. The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission will hold the election in 80 days. The poll interviewed 764 respondents in the Rift Valley. The poll also left out several counties such Laikipia, West Pokot, Elgeyo Marakwet, Turkana and Baringo. Countrywide, 57 per cent said they could vote for independent candidates, while 39 per cent dismissed their bids.

Data for the nationwide poll was collected from 3,430 respondents through telephone interviews. Raila has sharply reduced the gap between him and Uhuru, picking extra votes from the undecided group.

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