Politics and policy

Election team gives three days to hear nomination cases

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IEBC Chairman, Isaack Hassan (left) flanked by the CEO James Oswago address a press conference at the IEBC offices on January 23, 2013. The commission has named a five-member team to resolve disputes over party tickets. Photo/Jennifer Muiruri

IEBC Chairman, Isaack Hassan (left) flanked by the CEO James Oswago address a press conference at the IEBC offices on January 23, 2013. The commission has named a five-member team to resolve disputes over party tickets. Photo/Jennifer Muiruri 

By EDWIN MUTAI

Posted  Wednesday, January 23  2013 at  21:01

In Summary

  • The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has named a five-member team to resolve disputes over party tickets.
  • The team started hearing the complaints on Wednesday morning at the Milimani Commercial Courts in Nairobi.

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) faces a daunting task in trying to arbitrate more than 110 disputes arising from the just concluded nominations within two days.

IEBC Nomination Dispute Resolutions Committee chairman Thomas Letangule said those dissatisfied with the commission’s decision would be free to go to court.

A five-member team put together by the commission started hearing the complaints on Wednesday morning at the Milimani Commercial Courts in Nairobi.

The tribunal, however, adjourned its sittings prematurely to this morning to allow complainants to serve politicians and their respective political parties with the complaints.

“The commission shall adjudicate and determine on all disputes lodged by complainants to the commission between January 23, 2013 to January 25, 2013,” said Mr Letangule in a statement.

He said the commission would publish all the complaints on Thursday because the matter was of public interest. Those found to have acquired nomination certificates unlawfully would be disqualified, he said.

The commission allowed aspirants to file the complaints a day after political parties submitted final lists of nominees who would contest various positions in the March 4 General Elections on Monday. The nominations closed on Friday last week.

Businesswoman Mary Wambui whose TNA nomination certificate for the Othaya parliamentary seat was allegedly handed over to rival Gichuki Mugambi had lodged an appeal.

However, TNA stated Wednesday that Ms Wambui was still its candidate for the seat advising Mr Mugambi to seek redress at the IEBC tribunal.

“After carefully considering all the evidence adduced it was the decision of the TNA Tribunal that the nomination of Ms Wambui was factually correct in that she indeed garnered the highest number of votes,” TNA national chairman Sakaja Johnson said.

He added that the tribunal found that her nomination was not impaired by any irregularities.

Transport minister Amos Kimunya’s nomination for the Kipipiri parliamentary seat is being challenged by former area MP Mwangi Githiomi and Samuel Gichigi.

Former MPs Elias Mbau (Maragua), Njoroge Baiya (Githunguri) and Elizabeth Ongoro (Kasarani) have also lodged complaints, the latter over her nomination for the Nairobi senator’s seat being overlooked in favour of former Starehe MP Margaret Wanjiru.

Ms Wanjiru failed in her bid to contest the Nairobi gubernatorial seat after the Commission for Universities Education (CUE) ruled that her degree certificates from a US university were not recognised in Kenya.

A number of aspirants from Siaya, Kisumu and Homa Bay counties had also filed petitions with the IEBC.

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