Six presidential candidates have threatened to boycott the highly anticipated TV debate slated for 24th of July, terming the exercise as discriminatory.
In a statement to newsrooms, the candidates including Thirdway Alliance flag bearer Ekuru Aukot and independent candidates Michael Wainaina and Japheth Kaluyu noted they cannot take part in a debate where they have been divided into two groups.
“Further to our previous communications on the above-referenced matter, you are yet to clarify to us that you are not pursuing two tier presidential debates.
“Should you, therefore, be still committed to this discriminatory approach, the undersigned being duly cleared presidential candidates and their running mates will have no option but not to participate in what is a clearly unconstitutional, illegal and discriminatory process,” read an official statement.
The first presidential showdown was to take place last week but was cancelled after President Kenyatta and NASA Presidential Candidate Raila Odinga protested against the format adding that they had not been consulted.
The running mates debate planned for Monday (17/07/17) may also not take place following the failure of Deputy President William Ruto and Odinga’s running mate candidate Kalonzo Musyoka to confirm their participation.
The presidential debate was launched in May by the Debates Media Limited committee together with the Kenyan media houses’ journalists.
The launch was attended by:
1. Wachira Waruru – CEO Royal Media (and Chairman of the steering committee)
2. Sam Shollei – CEO The Standard Group
3. Joe Muganda – CEO Nation Media group
4. Waithaka Waihenya – CEO KBC
5. Ian Fernandes –CEO Mediamax
6. Julius Lamaon – CEO Kass Media Group
7. Joshua Chepkwony – Chairman Kass Media Group
8. Danny Mucira – General manager Radio Africa Group
9. Kuria Muchiru – Senior Partner PWC
10. Farida Karoney- Chief operating officer, Royal Media Services
11. Linus Kaikai – GM Nation Broadcasting
12. Joe Ageyo – Managing Editor TV, Standard Group
13. Clifford Machoka, Head of corporate and regulatory affairs at NMG
14. Francis Munywoki – MD Print, Standard Group (Head of Debate Secretariat)