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Jubilee calls off primaries in 17 counties, partially in 4

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 21 – The Jubilee Party has postponed its primaries in Narok, Kajiado, Kericho, Bomet, Uasin Gishu, Trans Nzoia, Baringo, Nakuru, Elgeyo Marakwet, Embu Nandi, Kiambu, Murang’a, Nyeri, Laikipia, Meru and Nyandarua.

The party initially partially cancelled the primaries in four other counties.

Among those who pushed for cancellation of the primaries was former Devolution Cabinet Secretary Anne Waiguru who is seeking the Kirinyaga gubernatorial seat and her rival Joseph Ndathi.

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“No nominations will continue in Kirinyaga. You can’t bring 300 ballot papers where there are 300,000 registered voters,” she said.

Aspirants in Uasin Gishu, Kericho and Nakuru took similar stands earlier in the day accusing the party secretariat of dropping the ball.

Uasin Gishu Governor Jackson Mandago was particularly vocal and together with other Jubilee aspirants demanded Tuju’s ejection from office.

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“The power now rests with the people. He can’t force us to do what he says from his swiveling chair in Nairobi. This is an embarrassment.”

While announcing the changes, Tuju conceded that the buck for the shambolic exercise stops with him but gave an assurance that the party will meet IEBC’s Wednesday deadline. “I apologise.”

Tuju and party National Elections Board Chairman Andrew Musangi blamed the shortage of ballot papers on the company entrusted with their packaging and distribution.

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“There was no way I could have counted each and every ballot paper packed,” Tuju said.

Musangi said a larger than expected turnout was also witnessed but assured that they had learnt from Friday’s debacle and would make good in the coming days. “We are now aiming for overkill.”

 

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