BY-ELECTION POLITICS

ODM, Jubilee blame game in Kibra campaigns homestretch

ODM claims Jubilee is buying votes while Uhuru's party is accusing Raila's people of dirty politics.

In Summary

• The two political outfits are embroiled in a bitter exchange and confrontation that has got the attention of both the referee – Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission – and National Cohesion and Integration Commission.

• IEBC directed that the ODM party make the complains formally through writing after the party demanded action on the alleged vote-rigging which they added was being facilitated by two senior ICT officials working at the Commission.

ODM candidate Bernard 'Imran' Okoth and Jubilee rival McDonald Mariga
ODM candidate Bernard 'Imran' Okoth and Jubilee rival McDonald Mariga

ODM party and its rival in the Kibra contest Jubilee is locked in vicious political blame game as campaigns for the mini-poll enters the homestretch.

The two political outfits are embroiled in a bitter exchange and confrontation that has got the attention of both the referee – Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission – and National Cohesion and Integration Commission.

On Thursday, ODM top officials had a day before the cohesion enforcement agency over unpalatable remarks they made while on a campaign trail in Kibra’s D.C grounds.

 

ODM Director of Elections Junet Mohamed (Suna East), Babu Owino (Embakasi East) and former Embakasi South MP Irshad Sumra recorded statements after complaints about alleged hate remarks during the ongoing Kibra campaigns.

"The two are required to answer to charges on utterances made that threaten the social cohesion fabric among Kenyans," the commission said in a statement released on Wednesday evening.

Jubilee Candidate Macdonald Mariga
Jubilee Candidate Macdonald Mariga

The commission had earlier warned ODM politicians of their imminent arrest and prosecution over hateful and inciting remarks.

"The commission is in receipt of a number of audio and video clips of politicians making what may amount to inflammatory statements," said Commission secretary Hassan Mohamed.

Junet’s outburst was in reaction to ODM’s claim that Jubilee candidate was in a vote-buying spree in the slum constituency and that everything was being coordinated from Deputy President William Ruto’s official, residence in Karen.

Earlier, ruling Jubilee which has become the punching bag of the Orange Party accused the Raila Odinga led party of engaging in violence to block the party’s candidate and football star MacDonald Mariga from freely campaigning in the region christened ODM’s ‘kitchen’.

In a communication to the electoral body, Mariga claimed the violent scenes witnessed in one of his rallies, was engineered by ODM supporters acting on express instruction from the party’s leadership.

 

He further alleged that the incident was a culmination of a series of “well calculated, planned and executed violence” against his supporters.

“I have herein attached a video of one of the occasions where the said instructions were being issued and the photos of the damaged vehicle, billboard together with the injured person,” Mariga said in his complaint.

ODM candidate Bernard 'Imran' Okoth
ODM candidate Bernard 'Imran' Okoth

In another case of accusations and counter-accusation, ODM while meeting with IEBC Commissioners over Kibra register alleged that a KIEMs kit was at Ruto’s residence and raised fears of possible importation of strange voters in the register to help its candidate in the mini-polls.

DP's communications secretary David Mugonyi immediately dismissed the claims, saying Jubilee does not need the kits to win the November 7 poll.

"We do not need the KIEMS kit to win Kibra. The people will decide. This is mediocrity redefined," Mugonyi told the Star.

IEBC directed that the ODM party make the complains formally through writing after the party demanded action on the alleged vote-rigging which they added was being facilitated by two senior ICT officials working at the Commission.

Speaking to the Star after the boardroom meeting, ODM national chairman John Mbadi promised the party will make their complaint formally.

Two weeks later, it is not clear whether the party made good their promise to formally complain to the electoral agency as was directed.