Former Roads Minister Franklin Bett has announced that he has hung up his political boots after losing in the Jubilee Party primaries.
Bett who was battling it out for JP ticket for the Kericho senatorial seat with Senator Aaron Cheruiyot and former National Housing Corporation chairman Sammy Chepkwony said he has quit politics arguing that the primaries were not free and fair.
Speaking on phone yesterday, Bett claimed that some well-connected individuals rigged the polls in favour of Senator Aaron Cheruiyot who won the senatorial race primaries. Cheruiyot polled 97,753 votes while Bett came second with 70,674 votes. Chepkwony was third after garnering 26,348 votes.
“I am quitting politics to concentrate on my businesses because it appears that some people have ganged up to frustrate me whenever I declare interest in any political seat. This has demonstrated that elections are no longer free, fair and credible,” said Bett who is the former Roads Minister in the grand coalition government.
Bett is also a former State House Comptroller in the retired president Daniel Arap Moi’s regime and Bureti MP. He was once a Permanent Secretary and Kenyan Ambassador to Australia.
“I don’t even understand how the current senator beat me in the primaries yet I didn’t see him campaigning they way I did. He never even set foot in Bureti Sub-County so this is rigging in a broad day light, “Bett claimed.
The former Roads minister stuck with Orange Democratic Movement leader Raila Odinga for a long time after other Kalenjin politicians had fallen out with him. He later quit ODM for the moribund Jubilee Alliance Party (JAP).
Bett contested for the Kericho senatorial by-election early last year where he came second after senator Cheruiyot in JAP nominations. He then announced he had conceded the defeat. Cheruiyot went ahead to beat Paul Sang of Kanu in the mini-polls necessitated by the resignation of senator Charles Keter after he was appointed as the Cabinet Secretary for Energy by President Uhuru Kenyatta.