Kiambu lawmakers want research firms regulated after the Infotrak survey
A section of Kiambu parliamentarians has called for the immediate enactment of a law regulating the operations and conduct of research firms ahead of the 2022 general elections.
Led by Limuru Member of Parliament (MP) Peter Mwathi and Kiambu Woman Representative Gathoni Wamuchomba, they alleged that most research firms are not independent and are easily manipulated by politicians to suit their whims, a thing they said is likely to ruin the political careers of hardworking leaders.
Mwathi while rubbishing the recent findings by the Infotrak Research Firm which passed a harsh verdict on his performance said that research firms should be objective, truthful, and responsible.
"A law should be put in place so that firms shall be held to account in the event that their findings are proved wrong by independent government agencies," he said.
"They make pronouncements bordering on malice, character assassination which dents the image of their victims," added the MP.
Saying that the findings are not factual, he wondered how the surveys would be significantly true, and yet it was done through computer assisted telephone interviews.
"Keeping in mind that they don't have access to the voters register, how did they know whether those that they called were from Limuru or any other respective regions," posed the concerned legislator.
Mwathi who spoke to the media after attending an NG-CDF public participation forum at Limuru Mission Primary school yesterday alleged that the research findings had been manipulated to imply that politicians perceived to be opposed to the Deputy President William Ruto had performed dismally.
"My constituents are happy with my work. The whole thing is a scheme to discredit leaders who support President Uhuru Kenyatta and that's why they are trailing in the rankings but we shall prove them wrong in 2022," he said.
The MP who is also the Parliamentary Labour and Social Welfare chairman accused the firm of driving the country into an election mood at the expense of development.
Gathoni who was placed at the tail end by the findings claimed that politics had infiltrated the research firm and advised it to be objective and truthful.
She said that the report was heart-wrenching and insensitive adding that her performance both in the National Assembly and in the county is exemplary.
"In Parliament, I have tabled Bill and pushed for the enactment of more than three laws while at the county, I have helped hundreds of alcohol addicts recover, helped tens of women and youth groups access loans to initiate income-generating activities and I hence wonder what criteria the research firm was using to gauge me," she said.
Kiambaa MP Paul Koinange also joined the fray and dismissed the results as wishful thinking by the research firm.
He said that his performance both as the Parliamentary Security committee chairman and as an MP is not contentious adding that he would not be distracted by the findings.
"How do you expect boardroom surveys to be precise. If they wanted to be factual, they would have gone to the grassroots and interviewed real people and not imaginary constituents," he said.
The Infotrak research firm released the findings last Sunday with the Kiambu results placing Kabete MP Githua Wamachukuru number one out of 12 with embattled Lari MP Jonah Mbora being the last.
Gathoni was named as the worst performing woman representative in the whole country while Buyu Akinyi of Kisumu county was ranked as the best performer.