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Denzel Musumba

Denzel Musumba


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A witness astonished an election court by confessing he took proficiency exams on behalf of a candidate who was then cleared to run, and won a parliamentary seat in the 2007 General Election. The confession by Mr Martin Ndungu that he sat for the mandatory language test for Gatundu North Constituency MP Clement Kungu Waibara reinforced claims by the petitioner — former MP Patrick Muiruri — that the man declared winner was a school dropout. Ndungu claimed Waibara approached him many times to sit the exams for him, and finally over tea at the Dancing Spoon Restaurant in Nairobi, he agreed to do so for free, and out of mercy for a man described as his friend. The witness, however, claimed he was not paid for "cheating", explaining he was just ‘helping’ a friend. "I sat for the test in place of the first respondent (MP) out of mercy. I was just helping a friend. I was not paid anything. I took the exam on his behalf," he said. Ndungu claimed he was now spilling the beans because the memory of what he did haunted him. "This thing has haunted me for a long time. Whenever I think about what I did against the people of Gatundu, I feel bad," he said. The MP, who was in court, fidgeted and made faces as his academic record turned the subject of the petition against him. At one point, he involuntarily covered his mouth with his hand, painting the picture of a man stunned and bewildered by the adverse claims coming out in the courtroom.