Campaign Tracker: Elections update as of June 17

William Ruto and Raila Odinga

DP William Ruto (left) and Azimio la Umoja presidential candidate Raila Odinga. They have been emphasising what they will accomplish within the first 100 days in office, if elected.

Photo credit: File | Nation Media Group

Deputy President William Ruto dared Azimio la Umoja’s coalition presidential candidate Raila Odinga to show Kenyans his degree certificates!

While Sakaja received reprieve from the High Court that maintained the validity of his degree from a Ugandan University, another gubernatorial contestant in the Coast is battling accusations of having graduated from a non-recognised university in Costa Rica! Martha Karua also issued a tough directive to Azimio’s politicians in Mt Kenya.

The campaign Tracker tells you all you need to know of Kenya’s politics as at June 17.

Show us your degree certificate, DP Ruto dares Ruto

Deputy President William Ruto challenged Azimio La Umoja-One Kenya Alliance Presidential Candidate Raila Odinga to show his academic credentials, claiming that he lacks a degree.

Dr Ruto dared  Mr Odinga as he defended Kenya Kwanza Alliance Nairobi gubernatorial aspirant Johnson Sakaja, saying “the deep state” was out to frustrate the outgoing city senator.

“Stop the pretense! Let IEBC perform its mandate. Sakaja will be on the ballot,” said Dr Ruto.

The DP told the Jubilee government to leave Mr Sakaja alone, claiming that he is an educated hustler and a city dweller who has his academic papers right.

“The deep state and system are making calls all over including the Uganda Statehouse wanting to stop Sakaja from being Nairobi Governor. I am telling you Jubilee leaders, leave alone Sakaja, he has enough certificates. If there is someone with questionable certificates, it is the Azimio Presidential candidate,” said Dr Ruto.

He added, "Where did he school, what, with who, who taught him? You cannot answer all that yet you are telling us he has a degree."

Dr Ruto together with other Kenya Kwanza Alliance leaders including Musalia Mudavadi and Moses Wetangula made the remarks at Nyakoria in West Mugirango in Nyamira County.

High Court saves Sakaja from CUE revocation of Ugandan degree

Nairobi Senator Johnson Sakaja moved to the High Court to challenge the adverse action by Commission for University Education (CUE) revoking its previous recognition of a degree certificate he had presented for clearance to run for Nairobi governor.

The court granted him temporary reprieve maintaining the validity of his degree's recognition, pending further directions.

"Let the People Decide. We shall be on the ballot," Mr Sakaja tweeted after the orders were granted by the Milimani court.

Yesterday, Mr Sakaja accused President Uhuru Kenyatta of influencing the revocation of his credentials by the Commission for University Education(CUE).

He said the action is illegal, null and void and was politically instigated to halt his bid to become Nairobi’s next governor.

In a Facebook post, the senator attempted to assure his supporters that come what may, his name will be on the ballot on August 9.

“The purported revocation of my credentials by the CUE Chairman is null and void, and politically instigated. The Chairman, Professor Chacha Nyaigotti Chacha, has been coerced and intimidated by President Uhuru Kenyatta to illegally revoke recognition of accreditation that has been properly issued,” he said.

Top German University Lists Raila Odinga in list of 100 most notable alumni

Azimio la Umoja One Kenya coalition party presidential candidate Raila Odinga’s name features as one of the most notable alumni of the University of Leipzig in Germany.

Mr Odinga’s name is listed as number 41 in the list of top-flight individuals including the immediate former chancellor of Germany, Angela Markell who starts off the list followed by renowned philosopher Fredric Nietzsche.

The university’s biography described Mr Odinga as a politician, university teacher and a businessperson before listing his political career including his service as Kenya’s Prime Minister from 2008 to 2013, leader of opposition in Kenya since 2013 as well as the ministries he served in including as Minister for Energy, Roads, Public Works and Housing.

 “Odinga was appointed High Representative for Infrastructure Development at the African Union Commission in 2018,” the biography ends.

While speaking in a rally in West Mugirango, Nyamira County, Deputy President William Ruto challenged Azimio La Umoja One Kenya coalition party presidential candidate Raila Odinga to show his academic credentials, claiming that he lacks a degree.

This statement against Mr Odinga came as Dr Ruto defended Kenya Kwanza Alliance Nairobi gubernatorial aspirant Johnson Sakaja, saying “the deep state” was out to frustrate Mr Sakaja.

“Stop the pretence! Let IEBC perform its mandate. Sakaja will be on the ballot,” said Dr Ruto.

Sell Raila in Mt Kenya without fear, Martha Karua tells allies

Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition running mate Martha Karua has hit out at Mt Kenya candidates in the coalition who are not campaigning for presidential candidate Raila Odinga, urging them not to be intimidated by the crowds.

Ms Karua said when she started campaigning for Mr Odinga after being named his running mate, she was heckled several times but she stayed put.

Her concerns stem from the large number of Azimio-allied politicians who are hesitant to campaign for Mr Odinga in the Mt Kenya region, fearing they will be shunned by voters due to the huge support Deputy President William Ruto and his United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party enjoy in the region.

She asked the politicians not to “buy fear” or give in to intimidation, but instead boldly sell the Azimio la Umoja and Mr Odinga’s agenda.

“You are either with us or not. There are some politicians within Azimio who are asking for their votes but when it comes to the presidential race, they tell voters to decide for themselves and we will not allow that,” she said.

Ms Karua was addressing a rally at the Meru showground on Thursday, where her host, Governor Kiraitu Murungi, his deputy Titus Ntuchiu and Igembe North MP Maoka Maore, flanked her. Nairobi Governor Anne Kananu and Public Service Cabinet Secretary Margaret Kobia were also present.

“We have bought fear, which will not help us and the problem is politicians who say Mr Odinga has not been accepted in the region. The truth of the matter is that wananchi have not rejected Azimio La Umoja…Politicians don't fear being heckled,” Ms Karua said.

Simba Arati’s two degrees are valid, IEBC rules

Kisii Gubernatorial candidate Simba Arati has two valid degrees from Jaramogi Oginga Odinga University of Science and Technology, the dispute resolution committee (DRC) was told.

Consequently, the Titus Tiego-led DRC terminated the complaint.

The new twist comes after two voters through lawyer Peter Wanyama  sought to have the complaint withdrawn on grounds Mr Arati has provided a genuine degree certificate and a masters degree from the same University.

"We have evidence and documents from Parliament  that Mr Arati has a degree certificate from the institution. We therefore seek to withdraw the complaint herein, " Mr Wanyama applied

Mr Wanyama produced in court a valid degree certificate and a masters degree of the politician from the University as well as a confirmation from Kenya National Examination Council.

Two voters, Moses Ayieko and Wesley Obwang'i, had earlier claimed Mr Arati does not have requisite education qualifications to vie for the seat in August polls.

They had also claimed that Mr Arati is not a graduate of Jaramogi Oginga Odinga University of Science and Technology

They had alleged, the academic documents in possession of the Dagoretti North MP are a forgery.

Sibling rivalry plays out at Kenya Kwanza rally in Kiambu

Signs of cracks within the Kenya Kwanza Alliance in Mt Kenya region played out on Thursday after two parties skipped a Kiambu rally addressed by their presidential running mate Rigathi Gachagua.

Chama Cha Kazi Party leader Moses Kuria and Tujibebe Wakenya chair William Kabogo gave the meeting a wide berth, a day after clashing with United Democratic Alliance gubernatorial candidate Kimani Wamatangi.

They cited “humiliation” and “voter incitement” by UDA leaders in the battle for Kiambu, which has nearly two million registered voters, the second highest county after Nairobi.

UDA has been campaigning for its candidates in joint rallies, leaving affiliated parties such as CCK and Tujibebe at a disadvantage, especially in meetings addressed by either Deputy President William Ruto or Mr Gachagua.

Tension was high in Lari on Wednesday evening when Mr Wamatangi and Mr Kabogo confronted each other at a campaign stop as both seek to unseat Dr James Nyoro at the governor’s mansion.

Mr Kuria said they withdrew from yesterday’s events because they felt unwanted and humiliated. “They want us to campaign for their presidential candidate but they don’t want us to market our aspirants to voters. This is totally unfair and unacceptable,” he said.

Mr Kuria said the Wednesday incident was well planned by UDA leaders, adding that they had shared their frustrations with the party executive.

 “What happened in the Hustler Express caravan in Kiambu on Wednesday is regrettable. The ugly altercation between Mr Kabogo and Senator Wamatangi is unfortunate. I can feel Mr Kabogo’s pain,” he offered.

Kabogo, Wamatangi fight at Kenya Kwanza rally

Deputy President William Ruto’s running mate Rigathi Gachagua was Wednesday caught up in a row over the Kiambu gubernatorial seat after candidates in Kenya Kwanza Alliance affiliate parties openly clashed.

Mr Wamatangi joined United Democratic Alliance one month to the nominations and floored Thika Town MP Patrick Wainaina Wa Jungle, who is now vying as an independent candidate.

Mr Wa Jungle has always maintained that Mr Wamatangi rigged him out in the primaries, claims that Mr Wamatangi has always denied saying he won fair and square.

Former Kiambu Governor William Kabogo Wednesday engaged Mr Wamatangi in Kagwe, Githunguri in a public shouting match. Mr Kabogo is flying the Tujibebe Wakenya Party, also in the Kenya Kwanza team. When Mr Wamatangi took the microphone to speak, he attacked Mr Kabogo, telling him to “shut up”.

“Don’t think you can intimidate me .Who told you are the only one who can talk? Who do you think you are?” Mr Wamatangi charged.

Calls for voters to shun other Kenya Kwanza candidates dominated yesterday’s rally with Kikuyu legislator Kimani Ichung’wah urging locals to only vote for UDA candidates in all elective seats.

Mr Gachagua kept off the local politics. Both he and Kikuyu MP Kimani Ichung’wah, attacked President Kenyatta and Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition Party presidential candidate Raila Odinga, accusing them of exposing Kenyans to high cost of living. They cited the recent closure of Keroche Breweries over a tax row with Kenya Revenue of Authority.

Governor Samboja’s degree certificate from Costa Rican University challenged

The hearing of a petition challenging the validity of Taita Taveta Governor Granton Samboja's candidacy took a new twist after it emerged that he presented a certificate from the University of Costa Rica for clearance for the August 9 polls.

In his replying affidavit to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission’s (IEBC) Dispute Resolution Committee dated June 15, Mr Samboja maintained that he has a genuine degree and dismissed the petition.

According to documents presented to the committee, the governor was awarded his Bachelor of Business Management on August 30, 2013 from the University of Costa Rica, a public university in Costa Rica, in Central America.

The governor asked the committee to dismiss the complaint, arguing that the Commission for University Education verified his certificates, his degree is authentic and that the petition was filed more than 24 hours after he was cleared to vie outside the time limit allowed by the law. 

"It is apparent and resoundingly distinct that before the issuance of the verification letter the commission conducts categorical interrogation of the academic degrees and materials presented to it and upon satisfactory results it proceeds to issue the verification letter accordingly," stated the response letter.

The documents show that on March 14, 2022, CUE verified the governor's degree among other certificates, including his graduate diploma in business management, advanced diploma in business management, standard diploma in business management, Foundation in English and Foundation in Mathematics.

In 2017, the governor presented a certificate from Kenyatta University (KU) that he used to be cleared by the IEBC.

The petitioner, Mr Jeremiah Kiwoi, is seeking to have Mr Samboja barred on allegations that he does not have a university degree claiming that the University of Costa Rica is not recognised by the National Accreditation Council of the Republic of Costa Rica.

He wants CUE to confirm why it verified the governor's degree certificate when the university is not recognised in its own country.

"That the first respondent purports to have graduated from a Costa Rican based university in 2013 when it is well known he was then a radio presenter with a secondary school certification,” Mr Kiwoi stated.