, NAIROBI Kenya, Dec 19 – Police in Bungoma are holding two suspects in connection with voter bribery claims, even as police assured that security had been heightened in all polling stations.
The County Returning Officer Ben Misati says the two suspects were arrested after they were allegedly caught by members of the public dishing out cash to voters.
Misati says the two were undergoing interrogation and would be arraigned in court if found culpable.
“Police are holding two suspects as they continue with investigations. If they find out that they committed crimes that they can be charged for, that will be upon them to do it,” he said.
Addressing the press at the Kenya Industrial Estate tallying centre in Bungoma, Misati expressed concerns over the low voter turnout.
The Returning Officer was however confident that the by-election would go on uninterrupted until when polling stations closed.
“Voting is going well in all the 941 streams,” he pointed out.
He says polling centers would be closed at exactly 5pm and only voters still in the queues by that time would be allowed to vote.
The Inspector General of Police David Kimaiyo had warned the residence of Bungoma County and Bomachoge Borabu constituency against engaging in violence during the two by-elections.
Kimaiyo said that police officers had been deployed in all polling centres saying anyone who violated election laws would be dealt with firmly.
He also urged all those contesting for the positions to conduct themselves as per the election laws.
“We call on the candidates and their supporters to desist from any campaign beyond the legally stipulated timeline, including the day of voting. Police will be vigilant to take lawful action against those who may want to jeopardise the peaceful conduct of the by-elections,” he warned.
He added, “Anyone who violates election Act and commits offences within the framework of that particular Act will be dealt with firmly in accordance with the law.”
The election results for both Bungoma and Bomachoge Borabu were expected to start trickling in by early Thursday evening.