The day is finally here, Friday the 21st 2017, when Jubilee Party aspirants will lock horns in the highly-anticipated nominations, during the first phase of the exercise.
But just hours to kick off, two gubernatorial aspirants have announced their defection citing rigging fears.
Murang’a Senatorial aspirant Moses Mwangi and Isiolo Senator Mohamed Kuti have jumped ship after developing cold feet, they say they fear the nominations will not be free and fair.
The announcements arrive just a day after another key member, Isiolo Governor Godana Doyo, also left the ruling party.
A report by the Daily Nation dated Friday, April 21, noted the two defecting politicians are eyeing the gubernatorial seats in their respective counties.
“In view of the prevailing circumstances where emerging information suggest potential massive rigging… I hereby tender my resignation from being a member and candidate for the Jubilee Party,” Mwangi said via a press statement.
He alleged that his rivals in the race, incumbent Governor Mwangi Wa Iria and Member of Parliament Jamleck Kamau (Kigumo), intend to play dirty in the nominations.
There were reports that Doyo has joined the Party of Development and Reforms (PDR) after he quit Jubilee. He was elected in 2013 on a URP ticket but the William Ruto-led outfit was dissolved last year to form JP.
Before their defections however, Jubilee Party leader President Uhuru Kenyatta and the Secretary General Raphael Tuju, maintained that the party primaries will be free and fair.
On Thursday, April 20, President Kenyatta issued a stern warning to would-be crafty members of JP, he said any aspirant found engaging in acts of violence or misconduct during the nominations will be severely punished including getting struck off the roll.
Tuju has also said on numerous occasions that misbehaving aspirants will automatically get disqualified from the exercise and will also not be able to vie as independents.