Itumbi's Defence of Mariga Backfires

  • Digital Strategist Dennis Itumbi's defence of barred Jubilee aspirant, McDonald Mariga, landed him in trouble after he insisted that the ex-footballer was a registered voter against reports that IEBC did not find his name in the register thus barring him from contesting in Kibra by-election

    Itumbi took to social media on Tuesday, September 10, to announce that Mariga will still vie under Jubilee.

    "Without a doubt, Mariga will be on the ballot. ODM party and Kieleweke wacheni uwoga (ODM party and Kieleweke should cease being afraid of Mariga). A Mariga candidature is unstoppable just like MP Ndindi Nyoro reminded us when he said that let the people decide," Itumbi lashed out on Twitter. 

    Jubilee Secretary-General Raphael Tuju awarding Dennis Itumbi with nomination certificate. Itumbi's defence of Mariga after he was barred from contesting backfired on him
    Jubilee Secretary-General Raphael Tuju awarding Dennis Itumbi with nomination certificate. Itumbi's defence of Mariga after he was barred from contesting backfired on him

    Elgeyo Marakwet Senator, Kipchumba Murkomen, also jumped to the defence of Mariga.

    "Mariga as per the Constitution and the established law is qualified to be a candidate in the Kibra by-elections. Those who are scared of competition are putting unnecessary roadblocks on his path. That was not a red card and VAR will prove us right," Murkomen sarcastically responded. 

    "I appeal to Mariga's supporters in Kibra Constituency to remain calm. Tomorrow we're to the IEBC Kenya Disputes Tribunal which will easily verify and find that Mariga is a registered voter. He will be on the ballot. Tukutane kwa debe (Let's meet at the ballot)," former Kakamega Senator Boni Khalwale added. 

    Kenyans quickly tore into Itumbi, reminding him of the same predicament ODM nominee Kethi Kilonzo suffered in 2013, during the Makueni Senatorial elections. Kethi was in the race to succeed his father, Mutula Kilonzo Snr. who had passed away.

    Itumbi himself had taken to Twitter in 2013 to announce Kethi's ouster from the race.

    Dennis Itumbi's post on Kethi Kilonzo in 2013. His defence of Mariga after he was barred from contesting backfired on him
    Dennis Itumbi's post on Kethi Kilonzo in 2013. His defence of Mariga after he was barred from contesting in Kibra by-election backfired on him

    Jubilee should settle for another candidate. You will not win this case, a replica of Kethi Kilonzo vs IEBC," Cheboi Isaiah warned. 

    "Writings are on the wall; what goes around comes around, the same constitution and the established law was there when Kethi Kilonzo was denied the opportunity to vie for the Makueni Senatorial seat, so don't fool us, you need to revisit your law school," Ragogo Charles responded to Itumbi. 

    "The same law that denied Kethi Kilonzo to vie in Makueni 2013 senatorial race should apply here no double standards," Jmwania Junior lashed back. 

    However, Itumbi while speaking to Kenyans.co.ke on phone defended himself and further shed light on the two incidents.

    "It would be wrong comparing Kethi Kilonzo's case to Mariga's. Kethi went to court together with Wiper Democratic Party to challenge IEBC for stopping her nomination. IEBC's argument, in that case, was that Kethi Kilonzo was registered in a nonexistent polling station in Karen and that the slip she had was traced back to a book only used to register Mwai Kibaki. Her was a fraud case. They ruled that she obtained her slip irregularly. For Mariga he registered at Kariokor, Starehe Constituency, all the other issues are irrelevant," Itumbi argued. 

    Other reactions to Itumbi's post. His defence of Mariga after he was barred from contesting backfired on him
    Other reactions to Itumbi's post. His defence of Mariga after he was barred from contesting in Kibra by-election backfired on him
    More reactions to Itumbi's post.
    More reactions to Itumbi's post. His defence of Mariga after he was barred from contesting in Kibra by-election backfired on him