27 February 2013

Kenya: Supreme Court Dismisses Elibility Case

The Supreme Court has dismissed an eligibility case against four presidential candidates. Judges Jackton Ojwang and Mohamed Ibrahim have dismissed a petition to bar presidential candidates Uhuru Kenyatta, Raila Odinga, Peter Kenneth and Musalia Mudavadi from contesting the elections on Monday, next week.

The two-judge bench said it will give its reasons for dismissing the case on March 27.

A voter, Isaac Aluochier filed the case against the four candidates on February 15. He said the four are not fit to contest the March 4 general elections because they have contravened sections of the constitution which bars state officers from seeking elective posts.

He said Raila, Uhuru, Mudavadi and Kenneth were already state officers when they were nominated by their parties and should not have been cleared by the IEBC.

The petitioner said he is basing his case on Article 137(2)(b) of the constitution, which states that a person is not qualified for nomination as a presidential candidate or deputy if the person is a state officer or is acting as one.

Aluochier said the constitution does not exempt holders of other state offices such as that of the Prime Ministers, Deputy Prime Ministers or ministers. Raila, Uhuru Mudavadi Kalonzo and Kenneth are still state officers, he said.

He said IEBC contravened article 27 by not stopping them. Treating equally state officers and those who are not state officers.

" Article 9 2 h provides that a person is disqualified from being elected members of parliament is he found to have in any way contravened chapter six," he says.

According to him, Raila, Kenyatta, Kenneth, Mudavadi and Kalonzo having held offices in political parties while being appointed state officers contravened the law.

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