Quit Msambweni campaigns, ODM now warns county staff

A motorcyclist rides past a campaign billboard belonging to  the ODM candidate for the Msambweni parliamentary by-election, Mr Omari Boga, on October 21.



Photo credit: Kevin Odit | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • ODM Secretary-General Edwin Sifuna called for investigations on state officers who are using government resources to campaign for politicians, saying, it amounts to an electoral offence.
  • Kwale Senator Issa Juma Boy claimed that some county government officials have been campaigning.  He said he will forward the matter to the national disciplinary committee.

The Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party has petitioned the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) to crack the whip on civil servants found campaigning for aspirants in the forthcoming Msambweni by-election.

ODM Secretary-General Edwin Sifuna called for investigations on state officers who are using government resources to campaign for politicians, saying, it amounts to an electoral offence.

Mr Sifuna called for neutrality in the conduct of the campaigns ahead of the by-election slated for December 15.

“We won’t sit back and watch civil servants go unpunished as they violate the law. It’s unconstitutional for people assigned official duties to do politics,” he said.

Kwale Senator Issa Juma Boy claimed that some county government officials have been campaigning.  He said he will forward the matter to the national disciplinary committee.

  “We have concrete evidence that county workers are doing campaigns; let them stop or we will report them,” he said.

Job opportunities

Mr Sifuna spoke on Friday when he met party officials in the county to drum up support for ODM candidate Omar Boga, who will battle it out with other eight others for the parliamentary seat left vacant upon the death of Mr Suleiman Dori.

Mr Boga stressed his commitment to empowering women and the youth by creating job opportunities. He pledged to work with other stakeholders to shore up the dwindling fortunes of the tourism sector, which is the economic backbone of the constituency.

“We will strive to bring change the people deserve in the constituency by empowering them and creating job opportunities for the youth” he said. Other contestants in the by-election include Feisal Bader — an independent candidate who is backed by Deputy President William Ruto, Sharlet Mariam Akinyi, Charles Bilali and Mansury Kumaka.

Postpone by-election

Others are Marere Wamwachai (NVP), Hassan Mwakulonda (Party for Economic Democracy), Khamis Mwakaonje (United Green Movement) and Shee Abdulrahman (Wiper).

 Meanwhile, Msambweni residents have rejected calls by human rights group Haki Africa to postpone the by-election due to the surge in Covid-19 cases, saying, they have stayed for long without representation in the National Assembly.

“We want the elections to be conducted as planned. Cancelling it will only deny residents their right to representation in Parliament,” said former Kinondo MCA Juma Maone.

“We cannot stay for more than eight months without an MP while other people are calling for the postponement of the by-election, thus denying us our rights to vote,” he added while urging the IEBC to ignore such calls.

ffadhili@ke.nationmedia.com

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