MPs protest as IEBC announces elections

Embakasi South MP.Julius Mawathe addressing the media at Parliament on Tuesday 18/09/18 on his election petition. [Boniface Okendo,Standard]

An announcement by the electoral commission that it is getting ready to conduct by-elections in Ugenya and Embakasi South constituencies has been met with opposition from the sitting MPs.

Embakasi South MP Julius Mawathe and Christopher Karani of Ugenya yesterday said they were legally in office on account of their applications, in the Supreme Court, challenging the nullification of their elections.

The two said they read mischief in the declaration of their seats as vacant and the subsequent announcement by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission that it was preparing for by-elections.

Commission chairman Wafula Chubukati said IEBC had received writs from National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi declaring the positions vacant.

“We have received writs from National Assembly Speaker for Ugenya and Embakasi South constituencies and we will start preparations for by-elections immediately,” he said.

But Mr Mawathe said: "Claims that there is a by-election in Embakasi South are false. As of now, there is no by-election because I have managed to get orders from the Supreme Court."

He claimed Mr Muturi may have issued writs declaring the seat vacant due to delays in receiving the court orders.

Mr Karani said he wrote to Assembly Clerk Michael Sialai on September 14 informing him of his appeal at the Supreme Court.

"I am surprised that IEBC went ahead to make the announcement when they are part of the appeal," he said.

Mr Sialai explained that the Speaker and IEBC could only be restrained from writing writs and declaring a seat vacant when there were express conservatory orders from the Supreme Court.

He said in the case of Ugenya there were no orders yet, while Mawathe had only served IEBC and not the Speaker with the order.

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Embakasi South constituenciesMPsEmbakasi South MP Julius MawatheChristopher Karani of UgenyaElectoral and Boundaries CommissionNational Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi