December 5, 2022

Court Upholds Petition Against Governor Mung’aro

Kilifi County Governor Gideon Mung'aro at a past function (Photo/ Courtesy)

By The COAST Reporter


An election petition against Kilifi Governor Gideon Mung’aro will now have to go full swing after a court declined to strike it out.

Lady Justice Anne Adwera Onginjo, sitting in Malindi said the court has no jurisdiction to hear the matter and ordered that the same proceeds to full hearing as from Monday November 28, 2022.

According to the petitioners some aspects of the petition linked the Presidential Election, whose determination is the preserve of the Supreme Court and thus why they wanted it be struck out as the High Court lacked jurisdiction.

“Apart from the paragraphs that make reference to Presidential Election, the petitioners have set out other grounds upon which the petition is premised and which this court is of the view that it is clothed with sufficient jurisdiction to entertain.

The petitioners further suffered another blow after the court struck out the inclusion of renowned lawyer George Kithi, Public Service Cabinet Secretary Aisha Jumwa Karisa Katana and Mr. Michael Tinga Jefwa as interested parties to the case.

Lady Justice Anne Adwera Onginjo rulings on petition against the election win of Kilifi Governor Gideon Mung’aro (Photo By The COAST Reporter)

Jumwa and Kithi run against Mung’aro during the August 9, 2022 Kilifi gubernatorial election and emerged second and third respectively but did not petition against the outcome, choosing rather to use proxies to advance that course.

Tinga on the other hand withdrew from the race at the last minute and threw his weight behind Kithi, but his name was on the ballot paper during the election since his withdrawal came too late.

The petition was filed by three voters Justine Ringa Chirume, Justin Charo Baya and Salim Chai Tsui  who named the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), Kilifi County Returning Officer Hussein Gure, Mung’aro and his deputy Flora Mbetsa Chibule as 1st to 4th in that order.

The three petitioners claim there were massive irregularities during the Kilifi gubernatorial elections and want the court to nullify Mr. Mung’aro’s election and order fresh polls.

Lady Justice Onginjo at the same time dismissed an application by the petitioners seeking leave to adduce additional evidence saying doing so would disadvantage the respondents.

Lawyers for the respondents in a case in which three voters have petitioned against the election win of Kilifi Governor Gideon Mung’aro (Photo By The COAST Reporter)

She declined to issue any order concerning an application to scrutinize the votes saying the same would be determined by the evidence during the main hearing.

The respondents had opposed the application on the grounds that some of the polling stations referred to were either not in the petition or were non-existent.

“This court will require to appraise itself on the particulars of the polling stations as pleaded by the petitioner and verify the same with the gazette notice that publish the polling stations,” she said.

The court however ordered the election materials be secured by way of additional seals being affixed by the Parties under the supervision of the deputy registrar at the IEBC warehouse in Kilifi.

Mr. Kithi, who despite being an interested party appeared as an advocate, immediately applied to be supplied with the ruling, signaling that he could appeal against the same in the Court of Appeal.

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