There was drama this morning at Bulonga polling station in Matungu Constituency, when former Sports Cabinet Secretary Rashid Echesa assaulted an IEBC official during the ongoing voting in by-election.
Echesa lost his temper while accusing the electoral agency official of barring the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) candidate Alex Wamukoya Lanya’s agents from witnessing the voting.
The official who was trying to explain himself did not finish his statement after meeting with a slap from Echesa.
In the video that has gone viral, Lanya is seen trying to calm down Echesa.
The contest in Matungu is a battle be between Deputy President William Ruto, ODM leader Raila Odinga and ANC leader Musalia Mudavadi.
More than 61,000 voters in Matungu have gone to the poll to pick a new MP to replace Justus Makokha Murunga who died in November last year.
The 15 candidates in the race were on Wednesday putting final touches on their logistics for Thursday and deployment of agents.
The candidates are Peter Nabulindo of ANC, David Were of ODM, Alex Lanya (UDA) Charles Kasamani (UDP), Paul Achayo (MDG) and Faida Auma of Maendeleo Chap Chap.
The Independents are Bernard Wakoli, Athman Wangara, Murunga’s widow Christabel Amunga and son Eugene Ambwere, Wilberforce Lutta, Kevin Nectus, Anzelimo Kongoti and Gregory Atoko.
Murunga was sponsored by ANC, but soon after 2017, shifted his allegiance to DP Ruto.
Kanu, Wiper and Ford Kenya are backing the ANC candidate.
Raila will be using the by-election to test whether his influence in the region he has commanded for close to two decades is still intact.
DP Ruto will be using the poll to gauge the impact of his spirited campaigns in the populous county.
Both ANC and ODM teams have claimed that there are plans to rig the poll by each side.
Mudavadi and Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya who is leading the ODM campaigns have expressed confidence that their candidates will emerge victors.
Security was beefed up in the constituency starting Monday ahead of the vote. Matungu has 116 polling stations spread out in 57 polling centres.
Western regional police commander Peris Kimani said security arrangements were complete to ensure peaceful voting. Returning officer John Kurui said that all was set for voting day.