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Low voter turnout witnessed as Migori votes

By Japheth Ogila and Daniel Ogetta | Published Mon, October 8th 2018 at 09:50, Updated October 8th 2018 at 12:52 GMT +3
Voting at the Migori by-elections Monday morning. [Photo: Courtesy]

Migori County Senate by-election kicked off Monday morning to a low voter turnout across many polling stations.

Pictures shared on social media depict short queues painting a picture of a possible voter-apathy.

ALSO READ: Migori: Moments of truth as by-election looms

Former Cabinet Minister for Energy Ochillo Ayacko is running against other four contenders among them the youthful Eddy Muok Oketch.

Oketch is on Federal Party of Kenya, the same party that took sitting area governor Okoth Obado to leadership in 2013. He is viewed as a fierce contender against Ochillo, who runs on ODM ticket.

With few people streaming in to cast their votes, officials of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission are, however. optimistic that the turnout will improve gradually.

The IEBC has promised a credible poll, assuring the candidates and voters that the will of the people will prevail.  A post on its twitter handle states:

"Each of the poll officials (POs and DPOs), who will conduct the Oct. 8th By-elections in Migori County (Senate) and Central Sakwa (CAW- Bondo, Siaya), took an oath today to maintain the secrecy of the ballot."

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The Senate seat was left vacant after the demise of veteran radio journalist Ben Oluoch Okello in June 2018.

The numbers

According to the figures posted on IEBC website, the county has 388,633 registered voters and 826 polling stations.

ALSO READ: Discontent threatens to split ODM party as factions emerge

In August 2017 General Elections, Okello clinched the Senatorial seat with a total 68,194 votes.

Politics

The by-election comes at a time when Obado has been charged with murder of pregnant Rongo University student Sharon Otieno and hasn't been granted bail as was expected today

On the contrary he was, together with his aides Michael Oyamo and Caspal Obiero, slapped with another charge; that of killing Sharon's unborn baby.

Amidst bashing by local leaders after he was adversely mentioned in the murder of the student, whose body was found dumped in Kodera forest, some of his supporters have stood with him.

Same supporters have thrown their weight behind Mr Oketch, who is touted at a main challenger for Ochillo Ayacko a  darling of former premier Raila Odinga.

 

ALSO READ: Economic prospects as Sh70 billion ring road, SGR take shape


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