Posts tagged as: elections

Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho Wins Reprieve Against Arrest

Photo: The Nation

Mombasa Governor Ali Hassan Joho (file photo).

By Philip Muyanga

Mombasa Governor Ali Hassan Joho on Wednesday got a reprieve when the High Court restrained police from arresting, charging and prosecuting him.

Justice Eric Ogola also ordered the Inspector General of Police to reinstate security guards assigned to Mr Joho because he is the Mombasa governor.

Police and the prosecutions director, the judge said in Mombasa, should not arrest, charge and prosecute the ODM deputy party leader.

The court further directed the State agencies not to harass and intimidate the governor.

Police and other security agencies have been investigating Mr Joho’s academic qualifications and bank accounts.

The governor is accused of forging a 1992 Form Four examination result slip. The Kenya Revenue Authority has also been looking into his bank and tax accounts.

ISSUED ORDERS

On Wednesday, the judge issued the orders pending the hearing of a petition by Mr Joho who wants his arrest and prosecution stopped.

The court did not stop the agencies from continuing with investigations against Mr Joho.

But the judge observed that any further investigations against the governor amounted to malice by the State agencies.

Justice Ogola said the court does not accept that utterances made by the President during a visit to Mombasa were meant to harass the governor, saying they were political.

However, the utterances may have had an effect on the State actors, noting that there have been fresh investigations and withdrawal of bodyguards after the President’s visit.

“Why the flurry of investigations and why now? The respondents misinterpreted the President’s utterances,” said Justice Ogola.

UTTERANCES MADE

He added that what the President is alleged to have said has not been denied and what matters is the context in which the utterances were made.

The judge said that any charges being preferred against the applicant now will have perceptions of unfairness.

Through lawyers James Orengo, Dennis Mosota and Julie Soweto, the governor had said the accusations against him have been investigated and decisions made in various courts.

The lawyers had told the court that Mr Joho was apprehensive that there was a sustained and malicious effort by State agencies acting on the instigation of the President to threaten and possibly harm him.

“The actions of the State agencies that have swung to action in disregard of their independence and set various processes in motion against the applicant amount to abuse of public office for collateral purposes activated by malice and in excess of lawful authority,” read the application.

IRREPARABLE DAMAGE

Mr Joho claims that he stands to suffer irreparable damage and prejudice unless the court steps in to check the infractions occasioned on him.

In his affidavit, Mr Joho said that on March 13, this year, President Kenyatta, while re-launching the Mtongwe ferry in Mombasa, threatened him.

However, the respondents told the court that Mr Joho introduced politics in the case and that there was no evidence the prosecutor or the police acted on the President’s instructions.

They further said the issues have nothing to do with the elections and that the Governor’s rights are not absolute.

The case will be mentioned on May 19 for further directions.

Jubilee Cites Infiltration Plot, Orders Use of Party Register in Nairobi

By Joseph Muraya

Nairobi — Only members of the Jubilee Party in Nairobi County will be allowed to participate in Wednesday’s nominations, the Elections Board Chairman Andrew Musangi has declared.

Musangi says the party had received intelligence reports that some people planned to infiltrate the process in a bid to interfere with the outcome.

“Ultimately, our aim was not to deny any voter the chance to vote and we even resorted to ultimately checking their identification of the voter with a view to seeing what location they come from and thereafter allowing them to vote,” he pointed out.

“Having said that, credible intelligence has emerged and we were constantly monitoring this even yesterday, that there were particularly concerted efforts to infiltrate the Jubilee Party voting in Nairobi.”

In other areas where the Jubilee Party has a massive following, people were allowed to vote despite their names missing in the register, but on condition, they had their national ID cards.

Musangi says the move will ensure the true will of the party members in Nairobi will be reflected in the outcome.

“This is a very cosmopolitan county and it holds Kenyans from all corners of the country and in the circumstances, we have instructed our presiding officers in Nairobi given the real and present of such danger in such infiltration to avert the will of the Nairobi voter, to use the party’s register until and unless any advice come from the party headquarters,” he stated.

Despite the exercise going on smoothly, key competitors in the seat for the governor’s position have raised concerns over some of their supporters missing in the register while others claim that some people are being allowed to vote twice.

In Nairobi, the leading candidates for the governor’s seat, Senator Mike Sonko and former MP Peter Kenneth raised similar complaints.

The two raised concerns over why their supporters were being barred from voting just because they do not appear on the register, which Musangi later explained.

Ironically, in other areas where party members are being allowed to vote using their ID cards, some aspirants have complained about it.

In Muranga County, Governor Mwangi wa Iria says some of his key polling stations have fewer ballot papers for the governor’s position.

He has urged the party to swiftly rectify the anomaly.

Kenya

Safaricom Given 7 Days to Explain Outage

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Kenneth Joins Sonko in Crying Foul Early in High-Stakes Nairobi Battle

Photo: Joseph Kanyi/The Nation

Former Devolution CS Anne Waiguru during a past event in Kirinyaga county.

By Olive Burrows

Nairobi — Mike Mbuvi Sonko and Peter Kenneth might not be able to agree on who among them should carry the Jubilee flag for Nairobi Governor but both seemed to agree on Wednesday morning that the party primaries in the county fell short of free and fair.

Both Sonko and Kenneth complained that some of their supporters were denied the opportunity to vote after their names were found “missing” from the party register.

“Some names have been omitted from the party registers,” Sonko told reporters. “If your name starts with an ‘O’ it’s not appearing in the register.”

Their complaints came about an hour before Jubilee’s National Elections Board Chairman Andrew Musangi made clear that in Nairobi, only those on the party register would get to vote in the nomination exercise.

In other counties, any ID card holder was allowed to participate. “This is a very cosmopolitan county; it hosts Kenyans from every corner of our republic. It hosts Kenyans with diverse political affiliations and in the circumstances we have currently instructed our presiding officers in Nairobi given the real and present danger of such infiltration to subvert the will of Nairobi voters, to use our party register until and unless any other advice comes from Jubilee Headquarters. We feel it is important to protect the party from any infiltration.”

Sonko however saw it as an attempt to rig him out of the race and both he and Kenneth called on Musangi and his team to urgently address their concerns.

More on This

Four Governors Trounced in Jubilee, ODM Primaries

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Only Party Register, Not IDs to Be Used in Jubilee Primaries

By Patrick Lang’at

The Jubilee Party has cancelled the planned use of national identity cards for all voters in the Nairobi County nominations, National Elections Board Chairman Andrew Musangi has said.

Mr Musangi said the decision to use its party register instead of IDs as is happening in other counties was informed by what he said was an attempt by members of other parties to infiltrate its process.

“Given the real and present danger of people who have had a concerted effort to subvert the will of the Nairobi Jubilee voters, we have instructed our officers to use our party register instead of an ID,” said Mr Musangi.

On Monday, the party had said that it will allow all voters who turn up for the Jubilee nominations to vote if they have an ID, even if they are not on the party’s roll of voters.

“Everything else is secondary for us,” Mr Musangi said on Tuesday on fears that not using the party register could invalidate the nominations.

Mr Musangi also said that the Nairobi ballot papers will be different from other counties because of the same fear of members of other parties attempting to influence the decision of the city county voters.

Meanwhile, the party has deferred MP nominations in Matayos (Busia County) and Mandera East constituencies to Friday and Saturday respectively.

In Matayos, Mr Musangi said the change was because of misinformation to voters by some candidates that the nominations will not take place.

Kenya

Safaricom Given 7 Days to Explain Outage

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Electoral Agency Criticises Court Order to Extend Primaries Period

By Dennis Odunga

A court order extending the party primaries by five days will eat into the time set aside for political parties to resolve disputes arising from the nominations, the electoral agency has warned.

Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) chairman Wafula Chebukati also faulted the courts for failing to accord them a hearing before granting the application by a Non-Governmental Organisation on Monday.

The Angaza Empowerment Network had said many Kenyans will be locked out of the nominations, if the period for conducting the party primaries was not extended beyond the Wednesday deadline.

Malindi High Court judge Weldon Korir directed that all political parties continue with their nominations until May 1 pending the hearing of the application.

DISPUTE SETTLEMENT

“That means there will be few days for dispute settlement, which is a special component of the primaries. What has been interfered with is the timelines for dispute resolution,” Mr Chebukati said.

Justice Korir also directed that gazette notices published in a special issue of the Kenya Gazette on March 17 that direct political parties to conclude their nominations by April 26 be suspended for seven days.

“Nonetheless, we expect political parties to submit their candidates’ names on or before May 10, 2017 while independent candidates should submit their symbols and the notice of intention to vie as an independent candidate on or before May 8, 2017. All the timelines in the notices have not been affected by the court order,” he said.

“The Commission will appear before the Judge tomorrow (today) to raise its concerns about ex parte orders which are final in nature but as a law abiding institution, the commission will obey the Order,” he explained.

TURNED DOWN REQUEST

The order comes a day after the poll agency turned down a request by political parties to extend the nominations deadline, citing a packed calendar.

On Monday, Mr Chebukati said the commission is mandated by law to set timelines for party primaries.

He pointed out that the Elections Act is clear that the commission shall by notice specify the period within which political parties must carry out nominations.

The commission chief executive Ezra Chiloba said they were surprised by the order but expressed optimism that their lawyers would handle the issue.

Kenya

Govt Vows to Stop Poll Violence

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President Blames Turnout for Shambolic Jubilee Primaries

By Nation Reporter

President Uhuru Kenyatta on Saturday said under-preparedness caused the chaos and confusion in Friday’s Jubilee primaries.

During a press briefing at State House in Nairobi the President said shortage of voting materials was due to a huge voter turnout.

He said the party cancelled the entire nominations exercise, “because doing anything to the contrary may have resulted in a subversion of the democratic will of the people”.

Here is his full statement:

Yesterday was unprecedented for the Jubilee Party. While the party was prepared for a normal Party Primary, we were confronted by a full scale general election in terms of the sheer massive turnout we all witnessed.

To the millions of party faithful who turned out to vote, and to the thousands of party aspirants who turned out to compete for party tickets, we unreservedly apologise for the under-preparedness for the magnitude and scale of the nominations exercise.

The Jubilee Party is committed to free, fair, transparent and credible nominations, which, as we have repeatedly stated, must reflect the will of the people.

Because of this commitment, we also took another unprecedented and difficult decision to cancel the entire nominations exercise, because doing anything to the contrary may have resulted in a subversion of the democratic will of the people.

Even in places like Laikipia, West Pokot, Tharaka Nithi, Nyandarua and Taita Taveta, where voting had largely been completed with the support and cooperation of aspirants, we also took the decision to cancel the nominations.

The Party leadership and the National Elections Board are now remapping the entire process taking into account the massive turnout we experienced yesterday. A detailed and revised primaries timetable will be issued by the party headquarters today, in accordance with the IEBC timelines.

I urge all party members to keep the faith. We assure you that the Jubilee Party will deliver on its promise for a transparent, fair, and credible Primary.

Kenya

Election Violence Threatens Nation Again

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I’m Winning but Will Concede If Defeated – Waiguru

By Simon Ndonga

Nairobi — Former Devolution Cabinet Secretary Anne Waiguru who is seeking the Kirinyaga gubernatorial ticket says she is confident of winning, but is ready to concede if defeated.

Waiguru is however certain that she is the most popular candidate in the county against incumbent Governor Joseph Ndathi.

“I think if the process is free and fair and someone loses, we should accept. However I am not losing,” she stated.

“If you have been around the county, you know that I am the most popular candidate and I am hopeful that I am winning this election,” she said.

On the delays in the process, Waiguru called on the secretariat to extend the deadline to enable everyone to vote.

“Most of the ballot boxes have started going to the various polling stations and I am sure some by now have started arriving,” she said.

“I do not think it is enough time but I am sure they will indulge us because they started late and the event that there are still people in the queue, the party should indulge us,” she said.

The nominations were yet to commence in several counties across the country – including Meru, Kiambu, Nyeri, Nakuru among others due to the delay in delivery of voting materials.

A spot check by Capital FM News showed that voters started arriving at polling stations as early as 5.30am but voting was delayed even though there was tight security from police and National Youth Service personnel deployed in various centres.

In Nyeri, the exercise had not started in most polling stations by midday, with most voters already leaving saying that they have wasted their day.

In Bomet, voting had also not kicked off by midday and the National Elections Board directed that it proceeds despite an agreement by aspirants Thursday night that they call off the nominations due to lack of sufficient materials.

In the meantime, two people have also been arrested in Laikipia West while distributing leaflets to discredit some of the candidates.

The duo, a driver and his accomplice are now being held at Kinamba Police Station.

According to Nyahururu OCPD Ezekiel Chepkwony, the private vehicle with the leaflets was also seized and police have launched investigations into the matter.

He added that police officers were also pursuing several other people believed to be behind the early morning incident that took place during the wee hours.

Kenya

Chaos, Confusion, Anger Hit Jubilee Nominations

Police on Friday fired in the air and used tear gas to disperse rowdy crowds angered by delays in the start of Jubilee… Read more »

Tribunal Dismisses Case Challenging Obado ODM Membership

By Maureen Kakah

The controversy surrounding Migori Governor Okoth Obado’s validity as a member of the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) Party was yesterday shoved aside after the Political Disputes Tribunal dismissed the case challenging the issue.

A five-member tribunal ruled that the complainant in the case, George Odede, had not exhausted internal party mechanisms in an attempt to solve the dispute.

Consequently, the tribunal upheld arguments by ODM defending Mr Obado.

ODM had also told the tribunal that it lacked the jurisdiction to hear and determine the matter as required by law, an argument which the tribunal agreed with in their verdict.

“The preliminary objection is hereby sustained, the complainant ought to have invoked internal mechanism before approaching this tribunal, the case was therefore premature and is therefore dismissed,” they ruled.

Mr Odede, an ODM member, had moved to the tribunal in March to protest that the Governor did not formally give his former party a notice of defection before ODM.

Through lawyer Chrispin Odhiambo, he had faulted Mr Obado of violating the Political Parties Act for failing to formally give a notice of defection from the party in which he was elected on, the People’s Democratic Party, as Governor.

He had also argued that ODM might continue to have him participate in their party activities including the party nominations now set for Monday in preparations for the August 8 elections contrary to the Political parties Act, Elections Act and the Constitution.

But through lawyer Samuel Makori, ODM trashed the allegations levelled against Mr Obado as merely speculative saying that he had not violated any law by defecting in addition to the argument on jurisdiction.

ODM had also insisted that it will take into consideration vetting him if he aspires to contest as its candidate and that he had satisfactorily met all conditions set out as well as relevant national legislation before joining them.

Following the verdict, Mr Obado was granted reprieve and may continue to act as an ODM member even as he is set to battle to retain his seat on the party’s ticket with former Cabinet minister Ochillo Ayacko, Nyatike MP Edick Anyanga’s wife Anne and Mr Paul Odola.

Mr Odede had wanted the tribunal to declare him not a member of ODM, that his continued association with it is illegal and that his seat be declared vacant if he indeed resigned from PDP.

Kenya

Do-or-Die Primary Battles in Ruling Party Strongholds

The Jubilee Party strongholds of central Kenya and Rift Valley will see political heavyweights face off in high-stakes… Read more »

Kenyatta Denies Endorsing Peter Kenneth for Nairobi Governor

By Aggrey Mutambo

President Uhuru Kenyatta has denied that he endorsed Peter Kenneth for the post of Nairobi Governor.

At a press conference ahead of his Jubilee Party’s primaries on Friday, the President argued he only asked his home county residents to pray for him as he seeks the post.

President Kenyatta also urged for peace ahead of primaries in his party, seen as the greatest test yet.

On Thursday, the President told reporters there will be no room for violence and said party officials were under instruction disqualify violence merchants.

“The culture of hooliganism during elections cannot and will not be allowed to gain currency.

“Any acts of violence will lead to disqualification and misconduct will lead to penalty under the law,” he said.

HOTSPOTS

The President warned against acts of violence generally as most political parties are also holding nominations, arguing the country must move forward from the perennial chaos seen at primaries.

But his focus was on the Jubilee Party which he leads.

The Party has promised to organise better primaries, but there are still hotspots such as in Nairobi where Mr Kenneth is running against Senator Mike Sonko for the Jubilee Party ticket.

For the Party, President Kenyatta argued the 60000 officials hired to run the elections are ready.

“Let us show everyone how party primaries can and should be conducted in a civil manner,” he said.

ROOM FOR MEDIATION

In Jubilee strongholds such as Nyeri, Kiambu, Murang’a, Kirinyaga, Uasin Gishu and Kericho, the party’s main lieutenants are also going at each other, creating a tense situation.

The President said he is favouring no one although he admitted “there is room for mediation” if parties choose to agree based on consensus on who should run.

“My office as the Party Leader remains available to any single aspirant who wants to pursue mediation.

“But the offer of mediation does not circumvent the democratic process that have been put in place,” he added.

Kenya

Residents Protest After Deaf Boy Shot By Police

Chaos erupted in Dandora Thursday morning after a police officer shot dead a deaf boy who was rummaging through garbage… Read more »

Angola: Govt Recommends Mass Birth Registration

Luanda — The report on the electoral registration process, developed by the Ministry of Territorial Administration (MAT) from August 25, 2016 to March 31, 2017, recommends the mass registration of the civil registry and the attribution of the Identity card to citizens.

According to the document, presented on Tuesday to the commissioners of the National Electoral Commission (CNE), by the Secretary of State for Institutional Affairs, Adão de Almeida, the Government must continue to work in the processes of mass birth registration and the allocation of the Identity Card.

It considers that this imperative of Law will allow the elimination of the component of testimonial evidence of citizens without documentation in the next electoral registration processes for the implementation of the unofficial registration.

Supported by graphs, figures and other elements, the report concludes that despite some obstacles, the objectives of the electoral registration process were achieved in the framework of the 2017 General Elections.

Angola

Man Arrested Over Beheading Two Girls

A man was arrested on Monday in Menongue, southeastern Cuando Cubango province, after he allegedly beheaded two girls in… Read more »

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