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Raila-Karua billboard that was torn apart re-erected

A campaign billboard in Bomet town for Azimio la Umoja – One Kenya Coalition presidential candidate Raila Odinga and his running mate Martha Karua has been re-erected a month after it was torn apart by unknown people.

This comes a few days before Mr Odinga’s planned but unconfirmed tour of Bomet County starts. He is expected to attend a church service at Ndanai in Sotik constituency and later hold a public rally. Mr Odinga has not visited Bomet since the 2017 General Election when he toured the region for campaign rallies.

The original sign was found in tatters on the morning of June 3, two days after it was put up. It was not clear whether the vandalism was the work of political goons or the sign was torn apart by fierce winds. No arrests were made in connection with the incident.

The incident came a week after a billboard of Deputy President William Ruto, who is perceived to be Mr Odinga’s biggest rival in the August 9 General Election, was brought down in the ODM leader’s Kisumu backyard.

Questions were also raised on the quality of the canvas bearing the photos of the two Azimio leaders.

A month later, the huge sign has been re-erected at the same spot in the town, but had not been touched three days later.

It was also curious that signs for the other politicians, including Deputy President William Ruto, the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) presidential candidate, and Governor Hillary Barchok, who is defending his seat under UDA, and his rival Chama Cha Mashinani (CCM) party leader Isaac Ruto, were still intact.

The other presidential candidates – Agano party leader David Mwaure Wahiga and Prof George Wajackoyah of Roots Party – have not erected their campaign posters in Bomet.

Mr Joseph Ngeno, the Azimio team’s Bomet County coordinator, Ms Lilah Siele, the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party Bomet Central parliamentary candidate, and Mr Michael Ngeno, ODM’s Chepalungu parliamentary flag-bearer separately expressed hope that the billboard would be protected.