19 June 2017

Kenya: Restore Security in Baringo Ahead of Polls, Candidates Say

Candidates eyeing political seats in Baringo County have asked the government to step up efforts to improve security in volatile parts of the county in order to enable them campaign ahead of the August 8 general elections.

The candidates, among them Mr Isaac Chebon, who is eyeing the Baringo governor's seat on a Kanu ticket, said that insecurity in parts of Baringo South, Baringo North and Tiaty sub-counties could interfere with the elections if action is not taken immediately.

Mr Chebon also said the ongoing security operation in Baringo may interfere with campaigns and elections in the region as most locals from Tiaty have fled their homes to the neighbouring counties like West Pokot for fear of being harassed by police.

Most of them might not return to vote if they are not assured of their security, added the candidate.

LOCALS FLEE

"It is disappointing that we cannot traverse some parts of the county during this campaigning period because the places are insecure and locals have fled the areas to safer places for fear of their lives. We fear that elections may not even take place in the affected areas," said Mr Chebon.

He called on the warring communities in region to remain calm and co-exist peacefully so as to tame the insecurity menace in the region.

"We need a permanent solution to the perennial problem and we call on leaders from the warring communities to hold peace meetings in a bid to find lasting peace," said Mr Chebon.

RIGHT TO VOTE

Woman representative candidate Gladwell Cheruiyot said all Kenyans are entitled to vote and it is not right to deny residents of areas affected by insecurity the chance to exercise their constitutional right.

"The government should beef up security in the volatile areas so that locals who have been displaced can go back to their homes," said Ms Cheruiyot.

Political candidates in the region have had difficulties carrying out their campaigns especially in Tiaty due to insecurity and the ongoing police operation.

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