Bonchari mini poll: UDA supporters decry violence
Deputy President William Ruto allied MPs campaigning for United Democratic Alliance ( UDA)'s candidate Teresa Bitutu Oroo in Bonchari Constituency mini poll have accused security officers of intimidating her supporters a week before the poll.
Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leader Omingo Magara said the police arrested two people who were perceived to be campaigning for her and are yet to be arraigned, terming it wrong and unacceptable.
He said police officers lobbed tear gas at the leaders’ vehicles as they campaigned for Bitutu and appealed to Interior Cabinet Minister, Dr. Fred Matiangi and Inspector General of Police, Hilary Mutyambai to intervene and stop police from harming innocent people.
“Some candidates are being allowed to campaign past curfew hours. The government wants to install a leader to the Bonchari people and it will not win,” Omingo told the press at Magharibi hotel on Wednesday.
The PDP leader, accompanied by South Mugirango Member of Parliament, Silvanus Osoro, Alice Wahome, (Kandara) Beatrice Kones ( Bomet East), Florence Bore (Kericho County) and Jane Chebaibai ( Elgeyo Marakwet) said no amount of intimidation will stop Bitutu’s victory, adding she has a head start.
He claimed some Chiefs and Assistant County Commissioners ( ACC) were at one of the candidate's home on Tuesday night planning to rig the election slated for May 18 and urged the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission ( IEBC) not to allow it.
“Every candidate’s vote must count. I urge IEBC to crack the whip and ensure that its independence is not compromised,” Magara told the Press.
Wahome challenged police officers to keep off campaigns, adding it is an era of democracy and the officers should candidates to campaign peacefully.
She lauded Bonchari voters for being firm and withstanding the intimidation by the police, stressing they know who they will elect to lead them for the remaining period.
“I appeal to the Commission not to condone violation of people’s rights. We want the ground to be level and meet at the ballot box,” Wahome stated.
The MP alleged that some public servants were being allowed to campaign contrary to the law, adding the leaders will expose them.
Osoro alleged there were plans for the Commission to announce the results past the curfew hours to keep UDA’s supporters away and urged the Commission not to succumb to it.
“IEBC is not part of the essential service providers. So they should announce the results before the curfew time so that they can also comply,” Osoro said.
He urged the Commission to be firm and not to be intimidated by top government officers and appealed to security officers to allow candidates campaign peacefully.