Even as major political parties organize heated campaigns against politicians running alone, a record 47 Kenyans have been cleared to run for President as independent candidates in the August General Election.
This could be Kenya’s longest presidential election ballot paper since multi-party elections in 1992 if all of them pass the final hurdle and are cleared to run by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).
They will face leading contenders Deputy President William Ruto and Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition Party boss Raila Odinga and Safina flagbearer Jimi Wanjigi for the top job.
The number of independent candidates has increased across the board, not only in the presidential contest.
According to a list obtained by the Nation from the Registrar of Political Parties, a total of 7,111 people are planning on running as independents for various elective seats before today’s deadline.
According to the data, 104 people have been cleared to run for governor, while another 141 people are running for Senate seats as independents. The 47 woman rep positions have attracted a total of 110 independent aspirants while the number of those gunning for the 290 parliamentary seats has hit 944. The office has cleared another 5,765 people to compete for the 1,450 county assembly seats.