, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 20 – Mutula Kilonzo Jr has been cleared by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) to vie for the Makueni senatorial by-election.
Mutula Jr presented all his required documents to the Makueni Returning Officer Salad Boru Guracha, including his national Identity Card, his nomination fees and a nomination certificate from the Wiper Democratic Movement.
After a period of checking and counterchecking the validity of his documents, Guracha finally gave Mutula Jr. the green light, putting a rubber stamp to his candidacy.
“This is the moment we have all been waiting for; I, the Returning Officer for Makueni County do hereby certify that Mutula Kilonzo Jr – ID number 13705756 – is hereby validly nominated for the County Senate election today July 20, 2013,” declared Guracha.
And to put all doubts to rest, Mutula Jr announced that he was registered as a voter at Uuma Primary School in Mbooni and that he actually voted on the March 4 General Election.
He also announced that he would cast his vote at the same station on July 26.
Mutula Jr hits the campaign trail three weeks behind his opponents but Wote town was already awash with copies of his campaign posters distributed overnight by supporters of the Wiper party which is strong in Makueni County.
Analysts say that the Wiper support in Makueni was galvanised by the debacle that followed lawyer Kethi Kilonzo’s nomination and subsequent revocation of her nomination for the Makueni County senatorial by election, after it emerged that she was not registered as a voter.
“The party has been campaigning throughout and what I am doing is joining the trail and other than my poster, this campaign has been going on for a long time,” he said.
Mutula Jr, who is Kethi’s elder brother, will be seeking to take over the leadership mantle from his late father.
He told journalists and his supporters that he was confident of a win and would be riding on the Wiper party’s strength in Makueni as well as his own leadership skills.
“I would like to thank the Wiper Democratic party for nominating me to vie for the Makueni Senate. I have accepted the nomination and my certificate is here. I want to plead with you to turn out in large numbers and vote for me,” he pleaded.
And Mutula Jr’s clearance did not pass without drama after Guracha kicked out Tip Tip party leader Kalembe Ndile from the clearance station accusing him of intimidating IEBC staff.
“Kalembe! Kalembe Ndile get out of here. Please get out. You are intimidating my staff. Please. I won’t allow you to do what you are doing,” directed Guracha.
Mutula Jr was accompanied by Machakos County Senator Johnstone Muthama, Siaya’s James Orengo and others. Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga and former Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka are also expected to join their CORD colleagues in Wote as campaigns for Mutula Jr get underway.