DEMOCRACY ON SALE – KEIYO SOUTH (INVASION)
By Hon Micah Kigen
I have taken time to reflect on the post-election outcome for the Keiyo South Parliamentary seat race which I had been the front runner and sure of winning.
All was well until Jubilee sensed danger. When they confirmed that their candidate stood no chance they summoned the entire government machinery in the constituency including professionals and civil servants who hail from the area and plotted a devious raid to comb all homesteads and villages with loads of cash to bribe and divert voters.
It should be noted that from that juncture, the constituency was turned upside down with hordes of civil servants and hired college students raiding homes bribing and misleading voters while bombarding them with hefty promises of public jobs (teachers, nurses etc.) complete with many mysterious recruitment letters.
To the shock of many, we have learnt that threats and intimidation were unleashed to both the voters and the community civil servants and professionals to force them to vote six piece for Jubilee. Locals were threatened that if they failed to vote as instructed, locals in government would be sacked en mass. This is political terrorism which I condemn strongly.
In all, they started with Ksh. 250,000 cash per sub location and stepped it up to sh.10 million cash on eve of polling day which was openly poured to voters openly throughout the night and on polling day. Shamelessly even election officials in polling stations were compromised to ensure that jubilee candidates are voted.
The huge sums of money deployed for the dirty work was directly dished out by the government. So crooked and evil was the operation that in areas where they suspected voters would reject their overtures, they simply intoxicated them with illicit alcohol which made many fail to make it to polling stations while those who staggered to the ballot boxes were directed to vote six piece for jubilee.
This was the whole evil maneuver that made Keiyo South Constituency end up with one Daniel Rono, the Jubilee candidate for MP instead of myself. The choice of the people.
It is obvious that the same was replicated in the entire county. It is a story of people being forced and diverted to vote in candidates they didn’t like. It is an ugly case of electoral fraud. Our people have been cheated through this jubilee sponsored ‘’democracy on sale’’’.
The zeal with which the senior civil servants in Keiyo community fought to bulldoze a non-representative, one sided Jubilee team to win all major seats in Elgeyo Marakwet County, has left a lot of hopelessness and confusion to the majority Keiyo residents. It should surprise all of us that all the top county seats:- governor, Senator and Women Representative come from one community only, through this state sponsored electoral fraud which denied people freedom to pick a balanced team.
Unless the same senior civil servants quickly embark on consultations to convince those elected to form a ‘’county government of unity’’ bringing on board members of the Keiyo Community who are not represented at the top, we are walking straight into a skewed political dispensation that is a recipe for strife and disagreements.
I THEREFORE TOTALLY REJECT THE ELECTION RESULTS FOR KEIYO SOUTH. It didn’t reflect the democratic will of the area residents. It also means that I was subjected to an unconstitutional electoral competition with the state (government) instead of the jubilee MP candidate Daniel Rono who was bulldozed to office illegally.
I am consulting widely over the next course of action. We have two options: – one to appeal in a court of law or two, to subject it to the court of the public. Such criminal conduct of elections is unacceptable.
More importantly and key to the Keiyo people, there is need for affirmative action to include officials from the community in the county government going forward. Sharing leadership positions and accommodating all ethnic, social and special groups within an electoral area is a constitutional requirement meant to enhance cohesion and integration.
Unity and development are key, yet they can only be achieved by a deliberate and well thought out arrangement to accommodate the Keiyo in the governance of Elgeyo Marakwet County.
Micah Kipkemboi Kigen