Eyes on Supreme Court for poll ver­dict

Business Daily (Kenya) - - FRONT PAGE - Chief Jus­tice David Maraga. Sam Ki­pla­gat Court has six days to hear and de­ter­mine the cases

The count­down to the Novem­ber 20 dead­line for judg­ment on the petition against Pres­i­dent Uhuru Keny­atta’s elec­tion starts to­day with a pre-trial con­fer­ence at the Supreme Court.

The apex court starts its sit­tings at 11 a.m to first de­ter­mine pro­ce­dural mat­ters such as the lead coun­sels for each of the cases filed and the hear­ing time al­lo­cated to the par­ties.

The court has six days to hear and de­ter­mine the three cases con­test­ing Mr Keny­atta’s elec­tion in the Oc­to­ber 26 fresh poll, with the last day of the judg­ment be­ing Novem­ber 20.

In the petition against the ini­tial Au­gust 8 elec­tion, the judges nul­li­fied Mr Keny­atta’s win, but pub­lished their de­tailed judge­ment 21 days later.

By yes­ter­day evening all the par­ties had filed their re­sponses and sub­mis­sions, along­side is­sues for de­ter­mi­na­tion.

For­mer MP Harun Mwau was the first to file a petition chal­leng­ing Mr Keny­atta’s win on grounds that the elec­toral agency did not hold nom­i­na­tions for the fresh poll as pro­vided in the law. In their pe­ti­tions also seek­ing nul­li­fi­ca­tion of Mr

Keny­atta’s win, Njonjo Mue and Khelef Khal­ifa also ar­gue that the out­come is void be­cause IEBC failed to sub­ject the can­di­dates to fresh nom­i­na­tions af­ter the Au­gust 8 poll was in­val­i­dated.

The In­de­pen­dent Elec­toral and Bound­aries Com­mis­sion (IEBC), in its re­sponse, has how­ever framed four is­sues to be de­ter­mined by the court. Among the is­sues are that the com­mis­sion con­ducted the fresh pres­i­den­tial elec­tion within the strict con­fines of the con­sti­tu­tion and the elec­toral laws and that Pres­i­dent Uhuru Keny­atta was duly elected as the pres­i­dent.

The com­mis­sion fur­ther wants the court to de­clare that there is no re­quire­ment for nom­i­na­tion in a fresh pres­i­den­tial elec­tion where the nom­i­na­tion of the can­di­dates was not an is­sue in a pre­vi­ously in­val­i­dated pres­i­den­tial elec­tion. IEBC will also be seek­ing costs of the suit. The In­sti­tute for Demo­cratic Gov­er­nance wants the judges to de­ter­mine whether they have the ju­ris­dic­tion to hear and de­ter­mine the petition and whether the op­po­si­tion Na­tional Su­per Al­liance prin­ci­pals led by Raila Odinga com­mit­ted elec­tion of­fences and en­gaged in se­ri­ous elec­toral mal­prac­tices and or ir­reg­u­lar­i­ties by boycotting the poll. The or­gan­i­sa­tion wants the court to de­ter­mine whether the pub­lic has suf­fered loss and dam­age as a re­sult of Nasa’s acts and con­duct and what are the ap­pro­pri­ate or­ders to be made by the court, if they are found cul­pa­ble.

In the petition, the or­gan­i­sa­tion through lawyer Kioko Kilukumi al­leges that Nasa’s ‘ir­re­duc­ible min­i­mums’ were set uni­lat­er­ally with the in­ten­tion to un­der­mine the in­de­pen­dence of the Com­mis­sion and to usurp its con­sti­tu­tional man­date.

The lawyer fur­ther says Mr Odinga, his run­ning Kalonzo Musyoka, Musalia Mu­davadi and Sen­taors James Orengo (Si­aya) and Moses We­tang’ula (Bun­goma) were de­ter­mined to en­sure that the fresh elec­tion did not take place.




RACE AGAINST TIME Gilbert Ogango, a clerk at Soweto and Com­pany Ad­vo­cates rep­re­sent­ing two of the pe­ti­tion­ers, iles doc­u­ments to beat the mid­day dead­line for do­ing so yes­ter­day.

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