The Star (Nairobi)

20 December 2012

Kenya: Separatist Group Loses Bid to Stop Elections

A court case filed by the MRC at the start of the year seeking to challenge the mandate of the IEBC in redrawing the country's boundaries has been thrown out by a five-judge bench in a Mombasa court.

In the 80-page ruling, Justices Francis Tuiyot, John Mwera, Richard Mwongo, Grace Nzioka and Edward Mureithi dismissed the suit by the group terming them as illegal and therefore not in a position to apply for any constitutional dispensation.

"MRC have neither the locus nor the competence to bring the application for the protection of the constitution," the ruling read.

The MRC had moved to court on January 31 to challenge the IEBC's move to redraw the boundaries in Mombasa and conduct elections in the Coast province since they said "Mombasa is not part of Kenya".

They further urged members to boycott the voter registration exercise and in also disrupted the exercise in sections of the Coast.

Earlier this year, a court had given the MRC legality, but warned the group to seek legal means to air its grievances of which marginalisation was the key concern.

However, after some demonstrations by the group turned chaotic, a court reversed the earlier ruling giving the MRC legality and outlawed them.

Security had been beefed up at the Mombasa law Courts, ahead of today's ruling that was adjourned twice owing to a two-day power outage in the city.

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