Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Marsabit politicians accused of importing Ethiopians for 2017 polls

Chiefs and village elders in Marsabit County have been accused of aiding foreigners from Southern Ethiopia to get Kenyan identity cards. Intelligence sources in the county indicate that the chiefs and elders, who are crucial members of their respective vetting committees, are allegedly used by rival politicians to help foreigners get the vital document. The chiefs and elders help other national government officers to vet those seeking IDs. Senior members of the committee include Assistant County Commissioners, Deputy County Commissioner, an officer from the National Intelligence Service and Registrar of Persons or their representatives.

The plot, according to the Intelligence sources, will later lead to registration of the foreigners as voters in various constituencies in preparation for 2017 general elections. It is alleged that rival politicians are ‘importing’ their kin to get IDs in large numbers in order to tilt the outcome of the next election. According to the sources, a ‘good number’ of the applicants are able-bodied men who average 30 years and nearly all do not speak either English or Kiswahili. National security In Marsabit Central, the county headquarters and also home to populous Saku Constituency where all the rival clans are found, the Deputy County Commissioner Kipchumba Rutto confirmed the report. “It has come to our attention that foreigners from southern Ethiopia have been given Kenyan IDs and more are lined up to get the same and we are probing this matter as it also touches on national security,” Mr Rutto told The Standard on phone. The administrator said authorities believe that rival politicians in the county were using chiefs and the village elders to aid the foreigners to get IDs that is, apart from a passport, is the other mandatory document for one to be registered as a voter. He confirmed that the intelligence department has the same information has been relayed to Nairobi.

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