Mag­is­trate should hear MCA elec­tion dis­pute, says IEBC

Business Daily (Kenya) - - COUNTY BUSINESS - Philip Muyanga­tion­

LAMU | The In­de­pen­dent Elec­toral and Bound­aries Com­mis­sion (IEBC) has said a dis­pute over elec­tion of a Mem­ber of the County As­sem­bly ought to be heard by a mag­is­trate.

In its pre­lim­i­nary ob­jec­tion to a pe­ti­tion filed by a voter in Lamu County, the IEBC fur­ther ar­gued the power to de­ter­mine va­lid­ity of an elec­tion of an MCA will be heard and de­ter­mined by the res­i­dent mag­is­trate court.

Michael Kanja Kagori, a voter in Ba­hari Ward is chal­leng­ing the con­sti­tu­tion­al­ity of the nom­i­na­tion process of an MCA and is seek­ing a dec­la­ra­tion that IEBC’S fail­ure to hear his com­plaint on party-hop­ping by a can­di­date from Ju­bilee Party to the Party of Demo­cratic Unity. Through lawyer Joab Weloba, IEBC fur­ther told Jus­tice Patrick Otieno that the Con­sti­tu­tion pro­vides time for set­tling an elec­toral dis­pute un­der the Elec­tions Act.

Mr Weloba said an elec­tion pe­ti­tion court is not barred from con­sid­er­ing con­sti­tu­tional is­sues.

“The ap­pli­ca­tion and the pe­ti­tion be­fore court is there­fore bad in law for hav­ing con­tra­vened ex­press statu­tory pro­vi­sions and should be struck out,” the pre­lim­i­nary ob­jec­tion fur­ther stated.

The pe­ti­tioner has also sued Party of Demo­cratic Unity (PDU), the Lamu County As­sem­bly clerk, the County As­sem­bly of Lamu, the Reg­is­trar of Po­lit­i­cal Par­ties and An­thony Njomo, whom he is ac­cus­ing of party hop­ping.

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