Voting kicks off in Kiambaa as Jubilee dismisses rumours of Njama withdrawal

Voters at Karuri High School Polling Station in Banana, Kiambaa Constituency. [Emmanuel Too, Standard]

Jubilee Party candidate for the Kiambaa by-election is still in the race despite reports emerging on social media on Wednesday evening that he had opted out of the race.

In a statement on Wednesday, June 14, party secretary-general Raphael Tuju said the messages circulating on social media about the withdrawal of their candidate Kariri Njama were false. 

“It has come to our attention that a fake message is being circulated on social media platforms aimed at misinforming the public about the Kiambaa by-election,” said Tuju.

Tuju said Njama was in the race and accused their opponents of resorting to propaganda and disinformation after sensing defeat.

“Shame on those opponents that after sensing defeat have resorted to using of tired and primitive disinformation tactics use in the 1960s,” he added.

Tuju urged all Kiambaa voters to turn up on Thursday morning to exercise their democratic rights.

Jubilee also warned of their opponents’ strategy of precipitating a situation of confrontation on polling day and later claim that they have been arrested to try and whip emotions.

The voting exercise kicked off today at 6:20am and will continue throughout the day.

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has warned politicians against interfering with the exercise.

Speaking to the media on Wednesday evening, Kiambaa Returning Officer Peter Muigai said political parties’ super agents will not be allowed in the polling stations.

Njama of Jubilee will face off United Democratic Alliance (UDA) candidate John Njuguna Wanjiku in a high-stakes vote pitting President Uhuru Kenyatta against his deputy William Ruto.

Other candidates in the by-election include Richard Njoroge (The New Democrats Party), Isaac Karomo (Federal Party of Kenya), Willie Mbugua (Independent), David Mugo (Independent), Evans Wainaina (Independent), Njoroge Harrison (Independent) among others.

The candidates are seeking to replace former MP Paul Koinange who passed away on March 31.

Kiambaa has got 96,000 voters with 154 polling stations.