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How political parties collected billions from aspirants

By Wilfred Ayaga | Published Mon, April 17th 2017 at 11:59, Updated April 17th 2017 at 15:07 GMT +3

Jubilee Secretariat Raphael Tuju receives nomination papers for Nairobi Gubernatorial aspirant Bishop Margaret Wanjiru at the Jubilee Party offices in Pangani. (Photo: Willis Awandu, Standard)

Political parties have raked in billion in nominations fees from thousands of aspirants seeking sponsorship for various elective seats.

The ruling Jubilee Party is the greatest beneficiary of the windfall from aspirants with an appetite for political seats.

President Uhuru Kenyatta’s party banked Sh673 million, more than double the total proceeds of Raila Odinga’s Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) which got at least Sh286 million.

A combined force of the National Super Alliance (NASA) received Sh374 million, including money raised from its four principals as presidential candidates of their respective parties.

The figures could, however, be much higher given the list is of aspirants cleared to contest in the primaries.

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Potentially, some may have paid the fees but never made it to the final list for ineligibility.

 Respective parties

Raila Odinga (ODM), Amani National congress (ANC), Wiper (Kalonzo Musyoka) and Moses Wetang’ula (Ford Kenya) each paid Sh1 million as nomination fees to their respective parties.

The Odinga-led party contributed the largest chunk of the NASA booty, with ANC bringing to the basket Sh37 million; Ford-Kenya contributed Sh10.4 million and Wiper Sh35 million.

The seat of MCA proved to be the main cash cow for political parties, with Jubilee making Sh300 million from its 6,000 aspirants.

ODM, which has 5,000 MCA aspirants raked in Sh125 million.

The combined effort of the four NASA parties made Sh177 million from MCA aspirants alone.

Even small parties were beneficiaries of the nomination largesse, with Alfred Mutua’s Maendeleo Chap Chap receiving Sh76 million, Kanu (Sh 43.5 million) and Isaac Ruto’s Chama cha Mashinani (CCM) raking in Sh5 million.

Chap Chap and Kanu which are backing President Uhuru’s re-election, are beneficiaries of defections from Jubilee Party by politicians apprehensive about the conduct of the ruling coalition’s primaries set for Friday.

More than 1,000 aspirants are vying for Kanu’s ticket to contest various seats.

Maendeleo Chap Chap has a total of  1,239 aspirants vying for various seats, including two governor aspirants in Kiambu County.

The amounts do not include money paid by aspirants whose names may not have featured in the final list.

Political parties are keen to raise millions as most of them are not funded by the exchequer.

Jubilee missed out on aspirant fee for a presidential and Deputy Presidential aspirant as Uhuru and his deputy, William Ruto are automatic candidates by virtue of their incumbency.

Some parties including Jubilee and some NASA affiliates have complained that the names of their aspirants are missing out from the IEBC list, which means that more millions cannot be accounted for.

“What is on the IEBC website is not the final list because a lot of our people have been left out. We have already written to the IEBC and we are waiting a response,” said ANC Secretary General Godfrey Osotsi.

The progressive Party of Kenya, which sprung just days to the primaries, will field three members of the National Assembly and over 40 MCAs.

Taking an average figure of Sh 150,000 for the Parliamentary aspirants and Sh 20,000 for MCAs, the party could have made in excess of Sh 1 million.

Party of National Unity, led by Meru Governor Peter Munya made Sh3 million after fielding 2 governor aspirants, 8 National Assembly aspirants and 150 MCA aspirants.

Charity Ngilu’s Narc Kenya made Sh1 million from two aspirants for National Assembly seats and about 30 MCA aspirants.

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