IEBC summons two MP candidates in Laikipia East over weekend skirmishes 

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), has summoned two parliamentary (MP) candidates in Laikipia East Constituency over last weekend’s skirmishes in Nanyuki town, ahead of Deputy President William Ruto’s campaign rally in the area.

Laikipia IEBC Elections Manager, Ms. Aloisia Kanini, said that the Commission had summoned United Democratic Alliance (UDA) candidate, Amin Deddy and his The Service Party (TSP) counterpart, Mwangi Kiunjuri, to shed more light on the skirmishes that saw five youths arrested by security personnel, who were quelling the violence.

Speaking, Wednesday, in Nanyuki town during the County Multi-Sectoral forum on election preparedness, Ms. Kanini warned that the Commission would not hesitate to bar any candidate found to have contravened election laws, while campaigning in the area.

“We will not hesitate to have names expunged from the ballot for any candidate found to have been behind the violence that took place recently, the Commission will not sit back and watch as electoral laws are violated, Ms. Kanini told the forum.

She added that so far one of the candidates had been questioned on the skirmishes that nearly paralysed business in Nanyuki town on Saturday and was quick to add that the said politician seemed unremorseful over the ugly incidents.

The County elections Boss added that the Commission was keen on ensuring free and fair campaigns and voting exercises noting that all candidates had signed the electoral code of conduct vowing to abide by it.

“Every candidate has presented his or her campaign schedule to IEBC, so that cases of intrusion of a rival politician rally do not occur. What happened last weekend was unfortunate and should be condemned by all,” Ms. Kanini said.

The forum that was attended by National government administrators, security personnel, opinion and religious leaders, and members of the civil society was taken through early warning signs for political violence and response mechanisms.

The forum heard that some of the threats indicators of political violence in the area included mobilization of groups or gangs, Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV), incitement through public utterances and social media toxicity.

Laikipia County Commissioner (CC), Joseph Kanyiri, who chaired the forum warned that authorities were on high alert over political violence and would not hesitate to arrest any politician propagating violence.

“I am issuing a stern warning to the politicians that if they do not stop war mongering and political violence, they should be prepared to be locked up in police cells together with the youths they are arming with crude weapons. We are aware that they have been holding night meetings aimed at planning how to cause chaos during campaigns,” Mr Kanyiri said.

The CC urged residents to help in identifying criminal gangs and inform authorities, noting that there was a need to create networks that promote peace and cohesion.



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