Battle for Marakwet East seat heads to Supreme Court

Court of appeal upheld Kangogo Bowen win saying petitioner failed to give enough evidence to prove his claims that the August 8 poll was flawed. [File, Standard]
The battle for Marakwet East parliamentary seat rages on after a voter moved to Supreme Court to challenge Court of Appeal verdict that upheld the election of Kangogo Bowen.

Sammy Kemboi, early this week, filed an appeal at the Supreme Court seeking the apex court to uphold the High Court verdict that annulled Mr Bowen August 8, 2017 election victory.

“Take notice that the Appellant, Sammy Kemboi, being dissatisfied with the decision of the Court of Appeal intends to petition the Supreme Court against the whole of the said decision,” read the Notice of appeal filed through M/S Magere Musundi and company advocates acting on behalf of Mr Kemboi.

On July 12, the Court of Appeal comprising of Justices Erastus Githinji, Hannah Okwengu and Jamila Mohammed ruled that the petitioner, Kemboi, had failed to give enough evidence to prove his claims that the August 8 poll was flawed.

“The respondent (Sammy Kemboi) could not prove that the election was marred with irregularities. The judgement of the election court cannot stand and therefore this appeal is allowed,” ruled the Appellate court judges.

The judges agreed with the lawmaker's contention that the judge erred both in fact and law in nullifying his election and concluded that the irregularities claimed did not affect the votes.

Mr Bowen's election was nullified by Justice George Kimondo at the High Court in Eldoret in February on grounds that there were massive irregularities and breach of electoral laws.

“The petitioner cited massive irregularities and proved some of them leading to the deduction that elections results were opaque and not verifiable, the process failed the test required by the laws and constitution,” ruled Kimondo while invalidating Mr Bowen victory.

Kemboi had further urged the court to announce Bowen’s closest competitor Linah Jebii who was vying on an independent ticket as the winner of the elections, claiming that IEBC and Bowen had conspired to manipulate results in favour of the latter.

During the hearing, Kimondo ordered for a recount of votes in four polling stations namely: Cheptany Primary School, Mungwa Primary School, Mungwa Dispensary and Kumbulul Primary School and scrutiny of forms 34A and 34B in 14 polling stations.

IEBC declared Kangogo the winner with 14, 812 votes against Kilimo’s 13,845, a difference of 967 votes.

Kangogo lodged a successful appeal against the high court ruling to nullify his victory.

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Kangogo BowenMarakwet EastSupreme CourtCourt of Appeal