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Court makes scrutiny order after noting errors in final declaration

By Wainaina Ndung'u | Published Fri, February 9th 2018 at 00:00, Updated February 8th 2018 at 23:00 GMT +3

The High Court yesterday pushed the final ruling for Buuri parliamentary petition to Thursday next week.

This will allow time for partial scrutiny of poll results.

Justice Anne Ong’injo ruled this after noting errors in the final declaration forms in a case where Mugambi Angaine of Party of National Unity (PNU) is challenging the victory of Jubilee Party (JP) candidate Mugambi Rindikiri in the August 8, 2017 General Election.

Mr Angaine polled 15,887 votes against Mr Rindikiri's 17,480 votes in a crowded field of 14 contestants.

Making a ruling on a scrutiny and recount requested by Angaine, Justice Ong’injo observed that results for several polling stations captured in the form 35A appeared to differ with the results captured in the Form 35 used to declare the full results at the constituency level.

“The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) and the returning officer admit that there were isolated cases of discrepancies between the two levels from inadvertent human errors which were corrected and witnessed three Jubilee Party (JP) agents but not agents of those affected by the changes,” said the Judge.

She also pointed out that the returning officer failed to capture figures for total votes cast and the percentage of voter turnout. Also not captured was the number of votes in words.

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The court also noted that a further scrutiny will help establish the genuine results as contained in the polling stations’ final declaration forms.

The returning officer had provided certified copies of declaration forms and claimed the originals had been sent to the IEBC headquarters.

Justice Ong’injo gave an order for scrutiny of all 35As for the constituency to be supervised by the High Court Deputy Registrar today and tomorrow and a report filed in court in readiness for a final ruling on Thursday February 15.

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