11 petitioners seek to block Ruto, Rigathi swearing in if elected

UDA Presidential Candidate William Ruto and his running mate Rigathi Gachagua during their final rally at Nyayo Stadium on Saturday, August 6, 2022. [Samson Wire. Standard]

Eleven petitioners have moved to the High Court seeking conservatory orders to bar UDA presidential candidate William Ruto and his running mate Rigathi Gachagua from being sworn into office.

In a matter of the pre-election nomination dispute certified under a certificate of urgency in respect of candidates for president and deputy president, the petitioners want the court to give directions of hearing and determination by Friday, August 26 2022.

The eleven petitioners have listed Ruto and Gachagua as first and second respondents respectively.

“That pending hearing and determination of this Petition, the honourable Court be pleased to issue and order conservatory injunction to restrain the first and second respondents from being sworn into offices of President and Deputy President respectively in the event that they get elected during the General Election scheduled for August 9, 2022,” the petition reads in part.

The petitioners are basing their arguments on Chapter six of the Constitution of Kenya.

“The Petition herein seeks to safeguard and enforce the principles, values and objectives of the constitution including chapter six thereof and its application to the eligibility of candidates for President and Deputy President,” reads the petition.

According to the petitioners, given the provisions of Chapter Six of the Constitution, swearing in of the Respondents to office will constitute a flagrant violation of Articles 3, 4 and 10 of the Constitution.

“Unless the court hears and determines the constitutionality of the registration and gazettement of the 1st and 2nd Respondents as candidates, it amounts to aiding and abetting illegalities if they are sworn into their respective offices in the event they get elected,” reads part of the petition.

This development comes even as Gachagua battles another case at the Anti-Corruption court.

Last month, the Anti-Corruption Court ordered the legislator who is incumbent Mathira Member of Parliament to forfeit Sh202 million for being proceeds of corruption.

In the July 28, 2022 ruling, Justice Esther Maina said the lawmaker could not prove how he raised the money.

Gachagua has since appealed that decision.