Maraga leaves repeat election a two horse race, dismisses Aukot's case

Thirdway Alliance presidential candidate Ekuru Aukot. [Boniface Okendo, Standard]

Thirdway Alliance presidential candidate Ekuru Aukot's bid to run in the October 26 repeat poll has hit a dead end.

Wednesday, Chief Justice David Maraga dismissed a petition seeking orders for Aukot's inclusion in the ballot for the October 26 repeat poll.

In a short ruling, Mr Maraga found that the Supreme Court did not have powers to hear the Third way Alliance leader’s case.

His decision means that the repeat race will be between President Uhuru Kenyatta and National Super Alliance candidate Raila Odinga.

The Chief Justice found that the case would be best heard by the High Court.

“This court has no original jurisdiction to interpret the Constitution. In the circumstances, I decline to admit it for hearing, instead I hereby dismiss it with no orders as to cost,“ ruled Maraga.

Two-horse race

Mr Raila and President Kenyatta are split on whether they should have a re-run with inclusion of the other six candidates or not.

 On one hand, Raila says that exclusion of the other candidates amounts to discrimination whereas the President says that the Supreme Court already decided that it was a two-horse race in 2013.

 In opposition, the President says that the issue of the other candidates was never raised in the case and thus the 2013 decision that a fresh election should be between two contestants in the case is still alive.

Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission Chairman Wafula Chebukati is also opposed to including other candidates. He argues that since they never challenged the August election, they cannot be included in the fresh race. "I verily believe the applicant is not eligible, having not filed a petition of his own or been included by the petitioners as third petitioner,” Mr Chebukati said.

Aukot went to court claiming that his "political right and that of my constituents as enshrined in the Constitution are threatened".