8 charged over Ndhiwa election violence

September 17, 2012 7:12 pm
Those who were arraigned in court in Ndhiwa were accused of attacking one of their opponents and robbing him of his belongings/FELIX MAGARA

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 17 – Eight people were charged with violent robbery in Ndhiwa as election malpractices were reported in three constituencies that held by-elections on Monday.

Those who were arraigned in court in Ndhiwa were accused of attacking one of their opponents and robbing him of his belongings.

The suspects however denied two charges of robbery with violence when they appeared before senior resident magistrate Bernard Omwanza.

They were accused of robbing Maurice Odhiambo of cash, a phone and a motorcycle all valued at more than Sh100,000 at Magina centre.

At the same time they were accused of robbing David Otieno Gor of a motor bicycle, cash and a mobile phone all valued at Sh91,000.

They denied the charges and the magistrate released them on a Sh500,000 bond each with the same surety. The case will now be in court on October 1.

The suspects who could not raise the bond were expected to be taken to Homa Bay prison.

Meanwhile, ODM candidate Aghostinho Neto has denied allegations that his brother was among the suspects.

Neto said his three brothers had been with him since Sunday and none had been arrested.

Neto accused his opponents in KANU of peddling propaganda to tarnish his candidature.

In another incident in Ndhiwa, a voter was arrested for double registration which is regarded as a serious electoral offence.

The man claimed that he lost his Identity Card earlier but suspected that someone must have used it to register.

In Kajiado North, one of the electoral officers was sacked for election malpractices.

According to Returning Officer Naisiaye Tobiko, the clerk was arrested on Monday afternoon after he tried to help an agent to vote in an area where he is not registered.

“We have had to discontinue one of the electoral officials who was working at Ewaso Primary School for going against the electoral code of conduct. Every electoral official has to sign the code of conduct… you go against it, the commission has a right to terminate your contract,” she asserted.

Tobiko expressed concerns that voter turnout in Kajiado North Constituency was low.

However, she said she was happy that the process was peaceful.

In Kangema, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission said it was investigating claims of voter bribery and vote buying that surfaced in the by-election.

Commissioner Thomas Letangule said the commission was probing reports of a man who was arrested near Kibutha Primary School polling centre trying to buy voting cards.


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