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ODM brawls way to Nakuru mayoral seat

By | July 25th 2009 at 12:00:00 GMT +0300

By Karanja Njoroge

ODM has captured the Nakuru mayoral seat in chaotic elections.

Former deputy mayor John Kitilit was elected the town’s new boss at the council’s chamber that momentarily became a battleground.

Immediate former mayor David Gikaria and PNU nominated councillor Zack Njeru faced the wrath of other civic leaders when they attempted to disrupt the election.

Council askaris with the help of regular and Administration Police dragged Gikaria and Njeru out of the chamber as Kitilit was being sworn in.

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Trouble started after Gikaria insisted the elections should not proceed because he had not been served with a notice of the meeting.

Gikaria claimed that according to Cap 265 of the Local Government Act, he was supposed to have been served with the notice of the meeting and to chair the proceedings.

Kicks and blows

He accused Town Clerk Sheik Abdullahi of being in a hurry to conduct the meeting despite some councillors having not been served.

Abdullahi, however, ruled Gikaria out and went ahead to conduct the elections.

Earlier, an attempt by Gikaria to stop the elections failed after a Nakuru court rejected his application.

Resident Magistrate Brenda Kituyi had ordered Gikaria to serve the town clerk and the municipal council, who were cited as the respondents, before she could hear the case.

But the application to stop the polls failed. The outgoing mayor had filed the application on the grounds that the right procedure to call for elections was not followed.

Gikaria then stormed the venue of the election. In the ensuing melee fellow councillors beat up Njeru.

A contingent of Administration Police and council askaris had earlier in the morning cordoned off the premises. But the heavy security presence did not deter the civic leaders from fighting.

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