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Politicians question the validity of opinion poll results.

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By Judith Gicobi

A group of Machakos and Kiambu county leaders have disputed the credibility of opinion surveys conducted by several businesses on the ratings of candidates seeking elected office.

The leaders, led by County Assembly Speakers Florence Mwangangi (Machakos) and Stephen Ndicho (Kiambu), both of whom are running for governor in their respective counties, alleged the pollsters of rigging the results in the favor of various politicians.

Ndicho said that the majority of the data favored those who paid for the service, and that the conclusion did not reflect reality. Mwangangi backed up this argument, claiming that the results were deceptive.

On Saturday, they were speaking at the funeral of Mama Kaluki Muli Kilango, the mother of Francis Kilango, a seasoned Thika-based journalist who also happens to be an evangelist,, at Kivingoni village in Yatta, Machakos County.

“Those who pay are rated highly in the charts, unlike the ones who do not pay. The polls are simply an avenue for people to make money and the results are not representative of the situation on the ground. Only the voter will decide who is popular during the elections,” Ndicho stated.

Mwangangi said; “Many of the so-called surveys and researches are doctored and misleading. The pollsters should be objective and scientific so that the results give the real situation on the ground.”

Kasimba Ngui, a local Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) official and parliamentary hopeful for the Yatta seat, shared similar concerns, saying that opinion surveys should be scientific and proffessional

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A recent poll in the Machakos governor contest found that one of the candidates had a popularity rating of about 80 percent, while others had less than 1 percent, a conclusion that a number of local officials disputed.

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