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Kenyan MP escapes, bodyguard detained in Uganda over voter fraud claims

By Cyrus Ombati | January 31st 2017 at 00:00:00 GMT +0300

Teso South MP Mary Emase

A Kenyan Member of Parliament allegedly escaped on foot while her bodyguard was arrested and detained at a Uganda police cell over claims of recruiting Ugandans to register as Kenyan voters.

However, by late Monday evening the whereabouts of the Teso South MP Mary Emase was not known raising questions if she had really escaped or was also held in custody.

Police in Kenya said they were aware that the MP's bodyguard had been disarmed and detained at Mawero police station.

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"Initial reports we have indicate that the MP's bodyguard was arrested. Her car was also detained at the station. We don't know if she was arrested too but she is not at her house," said a senior officer who asked not to be named. 

The officer said Ms Emase was in Uganda in an event with locals near the border that was stormed by officers.

He added that police had been informed she was meeting a crowd and urging them to enlist as Kenyan voters when the Ugandan officials acted.

A witness at the border said the MP was facilitated and managed to cross to Kenya but the bodyguard was detained. "She was covered and facilitated through the border," said the witness. The Standard could not independently verify this information.

Her mobile phone was not reachable. Her personal assistant, Lucy Ogutu, said the MP was safe but could not reveal her we whereabouts. 

"She has been out in the field and as far as I am concerned, she is ok," said Ms Ogutu.

Teso South borders Uganda and locals cross freely to either country.

Kenyan Security agencies were trying to secure the release of the car and bodyguard.

The MP is part of President Uhuru Kenyatta’s campaign team in Western region, alongside Bungoma Governor Ken Lusaka and Mumias East MP Benjamin Washiali.

The incident comes days after CORD leader Raila Odinga said Kenyan security agencies were recruiting Ugandans and Ethiopians to be enlisted as voters ahead of the August elections.

He challenged the National Intelligence Service Director General Philip Kameru to come out clean on the claims.


Mary Emase Uganda Raila Odinga
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