Court of Appeal has shaken the Homa Bay’s political landscape after it nullified the election of Governor Cyprian Awiti.
In the Thursday ruling, Justice Fatuma Sichale, who read the ruling on behalf of the three-judge bench, annulled the election for the second time after the High Court had voided it on grounds that the poll was marred by irregularities.
Judge Sichale ordered Awiti and the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) to pay Sh4 million and Sh2 million respectively to former Kasipul MP Oyugi Magwanga as costs of the case.
In February, Magwanga's petition against the governor's election sailed through at the High Court with Judge Joseph Karanja ordering a by-election. That was only weeks after members of his Cabinet took oath of office.
In his judgment, Justice Karanja faulted the IEBC for conducting the election shoddily. He said there were two sets of conflicting results in the governor’s election.
“There were two conflicting results presented by both the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) and the petitioner. It was the responsibility of the IEBC to distinguish the genuine one but it failed to do so,” said Karanja.
The judge held that evidence adduced before the court indicated that there were unauthorised alterations of forms 37A, foreign seals on ballot boxes and a number of electoral malpractices
Magwanga had emerged second during last year’s election.