Governor Ken Lusaka Wycliffe Wangamati
BY EURIDICE NZIOKA,NAIROBI,22ND JUNE,2017-The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission IEBC has fined Bungoma governor Ken Lusaka and his rival Wycliffe Wangamati Sh1 million after they were found to be in breach of the Electoral Code of Conduct.
The verdict of the commission’s Code of Conduct Enforcement Committee was read by Vice Chairperson Consolata Nkatha on Thursday 22nd June, found both candidates vying on Jubilee and FORD Kenya party tickets respectively, guilty of being behind chaos in Bungoma town on June 2 after their supporters clashed in which one person died.
The chairman of the committee who happens to be Chairperson of IEBC Wafula Chebukati says that both parties had admitted in their respective submissions on Wednesday that violence did occur, something the committee noted could have been avoided if the parties avoided clashing into one another’s campaign entourages.
Speaking after the ruling Lusaka said it was unfortunate that violence erupted, saying he was committed to conducting peaceful campaigns. He told reporters that he will comply with the ruling.
“We will study the ruling but in the meantime we shall comply. I am not a violent person and I will endeavour to campaign peacefully. I can only ask my competitors to avoid provocation so that we can carry out a peaceful election just like we did in 2013,” Lusaka who was the complainant in the case stated.
In another ruling, the committee ordered Netto Adhola to pay Sh250,000 within 48 hours or risk being disqualified after he was found to be in violation of paragraph 6g of the Electoral Code of Conduct.
The committee further ordered that Adhola to quit with immediate effect the use of ODM colours and the portrait of its leader – Raila Odinga – which could mislead voters to the detriment of Onyango who is the legitimate party nominee.
IEBC also delivered a rulings in a case involving the Starehe constituency parliamentary candidates Thomas Makori and Steve Mbogo, where Makori was seeking damages for destruction of his campaign posters by Mbogo supporters, who is the ODM nominee.
In its ruling, IEBC found Makori equally culpable of destroying campaign messages of his competitors as a photograph he produced before the committee as evidence depicted his poster as having been placed on top of another campaign poster.
Makori was therefore warned and the matter dismissed.
In the case between Benson Ong’onge and Fredrick Onyangi Okeyo vying for the Kayole South Ward Member of County Assembly position, the committee established that it had indeed the mandate to hear the matter, ruling out Okeyo’s preliminary objections based on the fact that that the violence he was being accused of happened prior to signing the code of conduct and that it had since been dispensed with by the party’s tribunal.
The matter will be heard on Friday, June 23.