31 October 2017

Kenya: Why Supreme Court Declined to Reverse September 1 Decision

Photo: Daily Nation
President Uhuru Kenyatta.

Supreme Court judge Isaac Lenaola has explained why the court refused to hear a case filed by two applicants who sought a review of the judgement nullifying August 8 presidential election.

In the ruling, Justice Lenaola said Jackson Ndegwa and Edward Kings Onyancha, who had asked the court to reverse its decision to avoid spending billions in the repeat poll, were not parties in case filed by Raila Odinga and Kalonzo Musyoka.

PETITION

Justice Lenaola, who sat as a single judge to hear the case, said the two applicants also seem to have misunderstood or misread the petition as framed and filed by Raila Odinga and Kalonzo Musyoka.

They two had also faulted the court for admitting the petition saying it was faulty. But the Judge said upon perusal of Mr Odinga's petition, show that it complied with the rules and was properly signed and lodged with the Registrar of the court.

"Most fundamentally, however, the applicants were not parties to the proceedings which that now seek to impugn. They did not seek to join the petition as interested parties or even as amici curiae," Justice Lenaola said.

He said the two can only seek a review if they were party to the proceedings and unless they had been properly enjoined to it, "all their patriotic attempts at invalidating the said petition and voiding the judgement must fail".

REPEAT POLL

Their application was rejected last month by Supreme Court deputy registrar Daniel ole Keiwua but they appealed and appeared before Judge Lenaola.

In their petition, Mr Ndegwa and Mr Onyancha argued that there is need to overturn the decision to save the country from spending Sh12 billion in the repeat poll.

The court, by a majority decision, nullified the August 8 presidential election citing irregularities and illegalities in the transmission of results.

Chief Justice David Maraga, Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu, Justices Smokin Wanjala and Isaac Lenaola ruled that the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission acted against the dictates of the constitution and electoral laws.

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