NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 31 – The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) now wants Moses Kajwang’ to submit a written complaint to the police and to the Homa Bay county returning officer after he was reportedly attacked by his rivals’ supporters on Friday.
In a statement, the Communications and Corporate Affairs Manager Tabitha Mutemi , the electoral body condemned the violence meted on Kajwang’ saying the case should not go unpunished.
“The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) wishes to strongly condemn the violence witnessed on Friday against Moses Kajwang, a candidate in the Homa Bay senatorial by election– IEBC Homa Bay County Returning officer has requested the candidate to launch an official written complaint to the police and IEBC to enable investigations with a view of taking the necessary legal action,” read part of the statement
IEBC cited section 65 of the Elections Act which prohibits violence during campaigns, and outlines the punishment to be faced by anyone found guilty.
“A person who, directly or indirectly in person or by any other person on his behalf, inflicts or threatens to inflict injury, damage, harm or loss on or against a person— so as to induce or compel that person to support a particular candidate or political party; commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding one million shillings or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years or to both,” sates a section of the Act
The commission further urged the public and especially the youth to avoid being used by candidates to propagate violence during the campaign period, while at the same time warning candidates contesting in the by-election to strictly adhere to election rules.
On Friday, irate youth pelted Kajwang’ and his entourage which included his elder brother Tom Kajwang’ (Ruaraka) with stones after he criticized his rival, Eng. Philip Okundi’s candidature while attending a funeral in his backyard.
Kajwang’ who is seeking to inherit the seat following the death of Otieno Kajwang’ also his elder brother was injured in the fracas after being hit by a stone on the head.
He has since recorded a statement with the Police.
IEBC has cleared 8 candidates to contest in the February 12th Senatorial by-election, although some have pulled out of the race.