The Msambweni by election got so much drama, arrests of leaders, bribery and low turn-out. The former Machakos senator Johnston Muthama, Belgut MP Nelson Koech and a man identified as John Kiarie arrested. The three arrested over alleged election malpractices. The police took the three, plus another man identified only as Kipyegon, and drove them in a police vehicle from Msambweni to Mombasa. The anti-terror police questioned them before booking them at the police station.
Last night, Muthama tweeted saying, “Tilting the playing field through threats, intimidation and arbitrary arrests will not change the will of the people. Our independent candidate, incoming MP Feisal is winning with a great margin,” He was also claiming that he didn’t know why he had been arrested. “My arrest occurs with no definite cause. Currently am at KPA police station. I have numerously been asking officers the reason for my arrest, “orders from above!”,” He tweeted.
The police also arrested 56 agents of Mr. Barder on Monday. They accused them of violating the curfew and charged them at the Kinondo court with a fine of Sh 1,000 each. Top police officers in Msambweni got orders to stand down and Lunga Lunga OCPD. Peter Dzimbi ended up being in charge of the election duties. The Lunga Lunga MP suffered minor injuries after some furious youths addressed him, claiming he was bribing voters.
Leaders pointing fingers at each other
ODM candidate Omar Boga cast his vote at the Jogoo Grounds in Bongwe Gombato Ward. However, he accused his opponents of causing confusion in his strongholds to disrupt the voter turnout. “I know their tactics. The people of Msambweni are peaceful and we shall not agree to be used to cause discomfort at a time like this,” Mr Boga said.
He accused the Nyali MP and activist Mghandi Klinga of causing chaos at Mwaroni polling center in Bongwe Gombato Ward. “They roughed up an ODM agent and took his phone after accusing him of bribing voters. They took off when the youth riding on boda bodas arrived,” he claimed.
Mvita MP Abdulswamad Nassir engaged in a heated argument with the Nyali MP that almost generated into a physical fight. Kwale Governor Salim Mvurya, who was present in the Kinondo court, claimed the law was selective. “It is unfair to arrest our agents and spare those of the ODM candidate. This is meant to intimidate supporters of Feisal.” Said Mr Mvurya.
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Mr Mvurya says the ODM had a plan to manipulate the poll. However, ODM Kwale chair Hassan Mwanyoha said the governor panicked after sensing defeat. Mr Hassan claimed those arrested admitted in court that they had violated the curfew.
There was drama earlier when Kwale Woman Representative, Zulekha Hassan went to prevent police officers, who had arrested one of his staff, Said Jambia, from driving off with him for allegedly taking pictures at a polling station. The officers arrested Said at Ramisi and drove to Magodi Primary school. Later, some leaders, Edwin Sifuna, the ODM Secretary General, Likoni MP Mishi Mboko, Nairobi Women Rep Esther Passaris and Kwale Senator Issa Boy, secured his release.