Msambweni Decides: vote counting begins in chaotic Msambweni by-election

Msambweni Decides: vote counting begins in chaotic Msambweni by-election

BY NAMULONGO PETER,NAIROBI,15TH DEC 2020-Vote counting exercise has begun in Msambweni constituency after voting came to a close shortly after 5pm.

The by elections has attracted a total of 9 contenders with two candidates Omar Boga of ODM and Faisel Bader who is the independent  candidate   being the candidates to watch.

Earlier police arrested Former Machakos Senator Johnstone Muthama and Belgut MP Nelson Koech  after the two were  accused of causing disturbance during the Msambweni by-election.

The two leaders, who were election agents for Feisal Bader, an independent candidate were arrested at Jomo Kenyatta Primary School in Msambweni. They were later taken to Mombasa. and were hurriedly rushed to Mombasa.

Former Mombasa Senator Hassan Omar said two other people had been arrested.

“We have two leaders, Muthama and Nelson Koech who have been arrested.

There are two more people arrested with them,” said Omar.

Muthama and other leaders aligned to Deputy President William Ruto, were monitoring the voting exercise in various parts.

Their arrests disrupted voting which resumed later under tight security.

The by-election was carried out under strict COVID-19 regulations after the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) declared a ‘No mask No voting.’

Police officers are yet to comment on their arrest.

ODM candidate Omar Boga who was among the first to cast his ballot at the Jogoo grounds exuded confidence of emerging victorious in the race.

“We want to have a leader in our constituency who has been elected by the people and who will, in turn, serve the people accordingly and I am hopeful of being that leader,” he said.

Other candidates in the race include Wiper Democratic Movement’s Sheikh Abdurahman Mahmoud, Deputy President William Ruto’s ally Feisal Bader, Marere Wamwachai of The National Vision Party, Hassan Mwakulonda of Party of Economic Democracy and independent candidates Charles Bilali and Mansour Kumaka.

The candidates were scrambling for the 68,621 registered voters in Gombato/Bongwe, Ukunda, Kinondo and Ramisi Wards.

The Msambweni seat fell vacant following the death of ODM legislator Suleiman Dori who succumbed to COVID-19 in March.

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