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Security heightened as goons warned against disrupting Juja mini-polls

Police have heightened security in Juja Constituency ahead of Tuesday’s parliamentary by-elections to ensure a peaceful exercise free from disruptions.

The Kiambu County Commissioner (CC), Wilson Wanyanga, said they have information that some aspirants have organised goons to disrupt the exercise, warning that they will be met with extra force.

Speaking after a security meeting in Juja town, yesterday, Wanyanga said security operators are on high alert and that anyone who will be caught causing chaos will be dealt with ruthlessly.

He said no groupings will be allowed as voters will be required to vote and go home to await results, in order to adhere to the Ministry of Health (MoH) regulation on Covid-19.

“Polling centres will be opened at 6 am and closed at 5 pm. There shall be enough police officers to man all the centres. Voters should be free to come out and vote as we shall provide enough security. Anyone planning to cause violence will be dealt with ruthlessly,” said the CC.

His sentiments were echoed by the Kiambu County Police Commander, Ali Nuno, who warned violence planners that their efforts will be brutally handled.

Meanwhile, the 11 candidates conducted final campaigns with each exuding confidence of clinching the seat which remained vacant after the death of the former Member of Parliament (MP), Francis Waititu ‘Wakapee’, in February after a struggle with brain cancer.

Among the main contestants include Wakapee’s widow, Susan Njeri (Jubilee Party) and George Koimburi (Gatundu South Moses Kuria’s People’s Empowerment Party). Koimburi came second in 2017 parliamentary elections, trailing Wakapee.

Others are Anthony Kirori (Maendeleo Chap Chap), Zulu Thiong’o, a former radio presenter (Independent), John Njoroge (Peoples Party of Kenya), Eunice Wanjiru (The New Democrats), James Marungo (Independent), Moses Mwenda (Independent), Dr Joseph Gichui, Iregi Kariuki and Kariuki Chege.

The candidates have been facing a difficult campaign period after the President banned political gatherings to prevent the spread of Covid-19 being restricted to online campaigns, use of posters, issuing goodies and holding talks in complete adherence to Covid-19 protocols.

The aspirants called for free and fair elections so that Juja residents get the best leader.

By Muoki Charles

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