JP man wins in Baringo as challenger protests

Charles Kamuren of Jubilee addresses the Press after casting his vote at Marigat Primary School during the Baringo South parliamentary by-election on Friday. [Kipsang Joseph, Standard]
Baringo South MP-elect Charles Kamuren Saturday extended an olive branch to his rivals and promised to work with residents to realise peace and development in the area.

Mr Kamuren said he was ready to work with all leaders to address challenges that residents face. He was speaking in Marigat after he was declared winner in the Friday by-election.

“I promise the people we will work as a team and move together, I call upon all the stakeholders to unite and move Baringo South forward,” Kamuren said.

The former Kenya National Union of Teachers (Baringo) Secretary was declared winner after garnering 12,277 votes. His close challenger Dr Cynthia Kipchilat of Maendeleo Chap Chap got 8,968 votes.

“Baringo South is greater than all of us and my win belongs to the people. The people come first. It is not about me but the win of the people, let’s join hands,” he added.

But Kipchilat protested the results as announced by IEBC claiming that election malpractices were rife at Ngarie polling station and called for prosecution of individuals behind it.

She said that the presiding officer colluded with the officials handling the BVR kits to alter results in favour of Kamuren.

“With regard to malpractices in Ngarie polling station it has been reported that the presiding officer proceeded to alter the election results in favour of Kamuren,” she claimed in her letter to the returning officer.

She further claimed that the results were altered from 193 to 243 votes.

“In the circumstance, IEBC should get to the bottom of these issues and as a candidate I reject the results forthwith and demand the arrest of perpetrators and charge them with election malpractice,” she stated.

Kipchilat declined to have her agents sign the forms bearing results which were announced by the BaringoSouth Returning Officer Paul Kones.

Mr Kones said he had no powers to alter the votes as results announced at the polling station were final.

“The election laws do not allow the returning officer to alter the results,” he said.

He noted that even if the disputed votes were given to Kipchilat it would not change the outcome of the results.

Tiaty MP William Kamket congratulated the MP-elect and urged him to join other leaders in preaching peace and complementing the peace efforts of the late former MP Grace Kipchoim.

“I congratulate Kamuren for the win. He now joins the league of thousands of Kanu members in Jubilee. And in the words of chairman Gideon Moi, the cuckoo bird has laid its eggs in the Jubilee nest and waiting to hatch,” Kamket said.

IEBC Commissioner Abdi Guliye who was present as the results were being announced said the Ngarie polling station case will be addressed by the commission.

“The issue of Ngarie will be handled by IEBC. Those employed either permanent or not permanent should abide by the laws,” he said.  

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Charles KamurenBaringo South by-electionsDr Cynthia KipchilatMaendeleo Chap Chap