Of­fi­cial ad­mits to er­rors as elec­tion pe­ti­tions con­tinue

Changamwe re­turn­ing of­fi­cer says poll clerks acted as Ju­bilee and ODM agents and signed Form 35A

Daily Nation (Kenya) - - NATIONAL NEWS - BY NA­TION TEAM

Cases chal­leng­ing elec­tion wins in Nyamira, Ny­eri and Nyali also take place

Are­turn­ing of­fi­cer yes­ter­day ad­mit­ted at the High Court in Mom­basa that polling clerks posed as Ju­bilee and ODM agents and signed a re­sult form at a polling sta­tion in Changamwe con­stituency.

Aisha Abubakar said two clerks signed Form 35A which was used to record re­sults of the Na­tional Assem­bly elec­tion as Ju­bilee Party agents, while one signed as an ODM agent at Chaani Pri­mary Pri­mary School.

She said the mat­ter was recorded in the polling day di­ary.

Asked by lawyer Gikandi Ngibuini, who is rep­re­sent­ing Mah­moud Mo­hamed Ali in a pe­ti­tion against the elec­tion of Omar Mwinyi as Changamwe MP, why the re­sults of the polling sta­tion formed part of the fi­nal tal­ly­ing, she said that was a mis­take.

“It should not have been tal­lied,” said Mrs Abubakar in re­ply to Mr Gikandi’s ques­tion on the va­lid­ity of such re­sults.

The re­turn­ing of­fi­cer was tes­ti­fy­ing be­fore Lady Jus­tice Njoki Mwangi.

She also ad­mit­ted that there were two cases of vot­ers be­ing is­sued with more than one bal­lot papers at Mikan­dini Pri­mary School polling sta­tion and Bokole Pri­mary School polling sta­tion.

The re­turn­ing of­fi­cer said prompt ac­tion was taken against the clerks and the vot­ers but ad­mit­ted that she could not rule out the pos­si­bil­ity that other ear­lier cases had not been stopped.

She fur­ther tes­ti­fied that one case was not im­me­di­ately brought to her at­ten­tion un­til the fi­nal tal­ly­ing a the con­stituency tal­ly­ing cen­tre.

Mean­while, in Ny­eri, Mathira MP Ri­gathi Gach­agua has suf­fered a blow af­ter court re­jected his ap­pli­ca­tion to dis­miss a pe­ti­tion chal­leng­ing his elec­tion.

Jus­tice Jairus Ngaah of Ny­eri High Court dis­missed the MP’S claims that he would be prej­u­diced since the pe­ti­tioner, Michael Gichuru, had in­tro­duced new ev­i­dence in the case.

The court ob­jected to re­ports that Mr Gichuru had gone beyond an op­por­tu­nity granted to him to rec­tify mis­takes in the pe­ti­tion like ty­po­graph­i­cal er­rors.

The court noted that though there were in­con­sis­ten­cies in the main pe­ti­tion and the amended one, the MP would not suf­fer any form of prej­u­dice.

And in Nyamira, Walter Nyam­bati who is seek­ing to have the elec­tion of John Nya­garama nul­li­fied claimed that more votes were cast than the num­ber of vot­ers reg­is­tered in 47 polling sta­tions in the county.

The Ju­bilee Party can­di­date said that as a re­sult, 13,488 un­reg­is­tered vot­ers were al­lowed to par­tic­i­pate in the elec­tion.

He also named a num­ber of polling sta­tions that had less to­tal votes than the ac­tual cast.

He said he was also given ex­tra 63 votes at Tombe Pri­mary School whose ori­gin he said he did not know.

Mr Nyam­bati also won­dered why each of the nine can­di­dates got the same num­ber of votes in more than eight polling sta­tions like at Ke­babe and Nyamwan­cha­nia.

“It looks like all fig­ures in those cen­tres were cooked,” Mr Nyam­bati said.

All the polling sta­tions in ques­tion are in North Mu­gi­rango con­stituency.

“Over­all, I got 58,936 votes against Hon Nya­garama’s 65, 161. This elec­tion was not free and fair,” Mr Nyam­bati told High court Judge Aaron Makau who is pre­sid­ing over the mat­ter.

Mr Nyam­bati is rep­re­sented by Ken Nyaen­cha.

In Nyali, MP Mo­hamed Ali got a re­prieve af­ter a court al­lowed his ap­pli­ca­tion seek­ing more time to file a re­sponse to a pe­ti­tion chal­leng­ing his elec­tion. The judge also al­lowed a sim­i­lar ap­pli­ca­tion by the elec­toral agency and its re­turn­ing of­fi­cer Mwana­juma Gan­dani. The pe­ti­tioner, Dan Ab­wao, wants the court to rule that Mr Ali was not validly elected. The hear­ing starts on Jan­uary 8.

It looks like all fig­ures in those cen­tres were cooked. Over­all, I got 58,936 votes against Hon Nya­garama’s 65, 161. This elec­tion was not free and fair.” Walter Nyam­bati, elec­tion pe­ti­toner

Re­ported by Gal­galo Bocha, Henry Nyarora and Joseph Wan­gui

KEVIN ODIT | NA­TION

Nyali MP Mo­hamed Ali at the Mom­basa Law Courts for the men­tion of a pe­ti­tion chal­leng­ing his elec­tion on Thurs­day Novem­ber 2017. The case will be heard in Jan­uary next year.

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