Azimio La Umoja One Kenya presidential aspirant Raila Odinga’s bid for State House remains uncertain after a petition was filed to bar his candidature in the August 9 polls.

In a petition filed at the High Court, Third Thirdway Alliance party leader Dr Ekuru Aukot argues that the former Prime Minister is a state officer and should have resigned before declaring his presidential bid.

Additionally, Aukot included Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka and Amani National Congress (ANC) leader Musalia Mudavadi in the petition.

The presidential aspirant explained that the three politicians earn from the government making them state officers.
“It follows therefore that the provisions of Section 43(5) of Elections Act, 2011 which demands that public officers resign and Article 137 which bars public officers from contesting for the Presidency operate to render the 2nd -4th Respondents unqualified to vie for the Presidency.”

“The 2nd, 3rd, and 4th respondents do not, therefore, qualify to be presidential candidates by dint of the provisions of Section 8 of the Act No. 8 of 2015 -Retirement Benefits (Deputy President And Designated State Officers) Act and Article 137(2),” read the petition in part.

Further, Aukot asked the court to determine the matter with urgency citing the election timelines set by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).

“It is extremely necessary that this court urgently determines this Petition since the electoral timelines have already been published and the concerned Respondents May be Cleared or elected,”

He stated that it would be against the law for the three to be cleared citing the Elections Act of 2011. While Kalonzo and Mudavadi are not vying in the August polls, they have been touted as possible running mates for Raila Odinga and William Ruto respectively.

“Rubber-stamping the unlawful conflict of interest that the three embody by being active politicians yet enjoying perks reserved for retired public servants,” Aukot stated in the petition.

All public servants interested in political seats in the August 9 polls were directed to resign by February 9 as was directed by the IEBC.

This was challenged in Court however, IEBC’S timeline was upheld by a three-Judge bench of Justices Daniel Musinga, Wanjiru Karanja, and Agnes Murgor on February 8.

By Kenyans

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