KENYA: LAVISH RALLIES OFFER GLIMPSE OF CAMPAIGN COST AHEAD OF 2017 POLLS

The lavish three-day events culminating in the launch of Jubilee Party offer a peek into the expensive capital outlay the next elections will gobble up.

While the ruling coalition and the main opposition Cord are expected to splurge billions of shillings between now and August next year when the country goes to the polls, hundreds of millions will equally be spent by aspirants at county, parliamentary, county assembly and governor levels to woo voters.

The figure has been ballooning in the past three elections, effectively locking out those without adequate means from politics.

A study in 2013 by the Coalition for Accountable Political Financing (CAPF), a Nairobi-based think-tank, estimates that retired President Mwai Kibaki and former Prime Minister Raila Odinga spent a conservative Sh7.5 billion each in 2007.

Mr Odinga was President Uhuru Kenyatta’s main challenger in the last election.

What was billed as the grand launch of Mr Kenyatta’s party on Saturday is believed to have consumed in excess of one billion shillings, with Sh360 million alone catering for the delegates’ allowances.

Some of the money went into venue bookings and entertainment, with many leading artistes hired to perform at the fete.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK