President Kenyatta’s past comments made corruption the most talked about issue in relation to the election on Twitter this week, an examination of Twitter data by Nation Newsplex and @Twitter shows.
From June 2 to June 8, one in four tweets that referred to the 10 key topics that the Nation Media Group is tracking in relation to the elections focused on corruption. Only four per cent of the tweets on corruption were positive, 42 per cent were negative and 54 per cent neutral.
Many of the tweets reacted to @WanjikuRevolt who shared a past video of President Uhuru Kenyatta, when he was the leader of the opposition advising on how to deal with a corrupt government. “Kenyans, I propose we take his advice! What do you think? #UhuruMustGo!” @WanjikuRevolt said.
The tweet got 383 retweets, 243 likes and 29 responses.
A tweet from @UKenyatta, on May 6, only added fuel to the fire. The tweet said: “I will beat Raila again.” It got 323 retweets, 633 likes and 316 replies, most of which were negative. @KomborayReplying to the tweet said: “Mr. President, it’s no longer about Raila, it’s about corruption and ineptitude in your government.”
@owinotheodore Replying [email protected] tweet urging Kenyans to unite tweeted said: “Am afraid, the high level of corruption, tribalism and high cost of basic commodities is eroding lots of your gain.”
But others rallied behind the president’s message. @RutinoPeter said: “I really support that strongly but we must be ready fight this enemy known as corruption.” @FGamadid said: Our nation cannot be sustained for as long as we have corruption and tribalism in high office. Let’s vote wisely @RailaOdinga @UKenyatta.”
Corruption has been among the top three topics of conversations since May 5 when the Nation Media Group started tracking election-related conversation. The issue replaced Education from the top spot. With 20 per cent of the tweets, education came second while the economy was third with 16 per cent.
The top trending sentiment in relation to the corruption tweets was nepotism and ignominy.
Jubilee or Nasa: Which party is the most talked about?
During the week under review people referenced Jubilee (62 per cent or 44,424 tweets) than Nasa (35 per cent or 23,076). Conversation about Jubilee peaked on June 8 while the National Super Alliance (Nasa) was most talked about on June 3.
During the peak hour at 9am on Jubilee’s peak day the main topic of conversation was corruption.
@mwikali280 said: “We have seen great teamwork and development through the @UKenyatta led administration na ndio nasema#MbeleIkoSawa .”
@missmutula said: “Uhuru is all over telling Kenyans they have done this and that. Why is their corruption visible than their development? #GoKEmptyTalk “
During the peak hour at 3pm on Nasa’s peak day the main topic of conversation was the around the Nasa presidential campaign launch in Kakamega.
@augustinewanga was not impressed with what was being said at the rally. He said: [email protected] @BenjiNdolo BUKHUNGU STADIUM: Raila Odinga and compatriots are discussing Uhuru and Ruto instead of selling their agendas.”
Nineteen per cent of the tweets related to Jubilee were positive, 60 per cent were neutral and 21 per negative. Twenty two per cent of the tweets related to Nasa were positive, 19 per cent negative and 59 per cent neutral.
The main sentiments in tweets that referenced Jubilee were corrupt and insults while the main sentiments on ones that referenced Nasa were thank you and sad.
The other six campaigns accounted for three per cent of all the tweets or 1,944 tweets.
Which was the most talked about candidate?
During the week under analysis, Mr Kenyatta was the most talked-about candidate. Just over two in three (66 per cent) of all the tweets on the 10 topics related to him, while 18 per cent referred to Odinga.
A tweet does not necessarily need to be supportive towards a political party or candidate to be included in the analysis.
A total of 4,627 tweets from June 2-8 focused on the 10 topics that, in addition to corruption, education and economy also include: health, jobs, food and water, security, Kenyan spirit, devolution and land reforms. In total there 78,187 tweets that referenced Election 2017.