Loser in Makueni race pledges to work with Governor Kibwana

Thursday August 31 2017

Makueni Governor Kivutha Kibwana (right) embraces Mr David Masika, his main challenger in the August 8 polls when they met during a burial in Wote on August 30, 2017. Mr Masika said he had dropped his bid to challenge Prof Kibwana's win in court. PHOTO | PIUS MAUNDU | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Makueni Governor Kivutha Kibwana (right) embraces Mr David Masika, his main challenger in the August 8 polls when they met during a burial in Wote on August 30, 2017. Mr Masika said he had dropped his bid to challenge Prof Kibwana's win in court. PHOTO | PIUS MAUNDU | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By PIUS MAUNDU
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Makueni Governor Kivutha Kibwana's main challenger in the August 8 polls who had been toying with the idea of challenging the poll outcome in court has reconsidered the move and has instead pledged to back the county boss.

Mr David Masika announced his decision Wednesday in Mwaani Village near Wote Town during a burial ceremony that he had attended together with Prof Kibwana.

He said that a team of lawyers he had contracted to look into the prospect of building a case had advised him against attempting to challenge Prof Kibwana's re-election.

"On Thursday, this team of lawyers advised us that we do not have enough grounds to build a case because the Makueni governorship poll was free and fair," he said to a deafening applause from the mourners.

TRAILED IN POLL

Mr Masika, who ran on a New Democrats Party ticket, got 25,789 votes trailing Prof Kibwana of Wiper party who got 221,288 votes to emerge winner.

A real estate management entrepreneur, Mr Masika had mounted a spirited fight centred on poking holes into Prof Kibwana's scorecard.

Shortly after the polls, he addressed a press conference in which he announced his intention to challenge the results in court.

Around that time, he engaged former anti-graft boss Mumo Matemu and lawyers Daniel Musyoka and Kyalo Mbobu to advise him on the prospects of building up a case, he said.

"Going forward, we shall support Governor Kibwana to deliver on his mandate," he said.

Embracing Mr Masika, Prof Kibwana said that he would work with the tycoon for the benefit of the people of Mkueni County.