City ward reps read mischief as clerk locks out speaker hopefuls

A section of UDA ward reps led by Anthony Kiragu (in black) address the press at City Hall oN September, 28, 2022. [Samson Wire, Standard]

Nairobi County Assembly Speaker Benson Mutura will not defend his seat after he was locked out of Thursday’s contest.

Some United Democratic Alliance (UDA) ward reps accused the clerk of introducing flimsy ground to lock Mutura and seven other candidates from the elections.

And now, they have vowed to stop the swearing-in of the assembly speaker.

Mutura was among the nine contestants who returned their nomination forms to vie for the seat. Only two were cleared by Wednesday afternoon. Elected members from UDA accused the County Clerk Edward Gichana of striking out Mutura’s name and the other seven said to be allied to the Kenya Kwanza coalition.

“We are shocked because the clerk and his team have imposed rules that are not constitutional. They have come up with these measures because they favour some candidates,” Waithaka MCA Anthony Kiragu claimed.

“We are not going to accept and will block any kind of purported voting. We are defending the seven who have been locked out and we will contest that because the measures were put to block others,” added Kiragu.

According to members, 24 candidates had picked nomination papers for the seat. However, they read mischief in the rules that were used to eliminate some of them.

“We were not required to produce a certificate of good conduct. No swearing in will take place until the issue is sorted. The law is clear on the requirement for the speaker,” Kiragu said.

The members said Mutura and others were removed because they were unable to attach certificates of good conduct and other documents which they say have never been used to vet hopefuls for the seat. “They have asked for a certificate of good conduct which was not possible to get in the short period,” said Kiragu.

“Umoja 1 MCA Mark Mugambi Machariai said they were shocked since Mutura had been locked out despite being the incumbent,” Mugambi said. “It is ironic to be told for instance that someone who has been the speaker does not have a certificate of good conduct or tax compliance,” Mugambi said.

On Tuesday, clerk Gichana said all standing orders, procedure and necessary statues will be enforced to ensure a democratic, free and fair election. “Everything has been put in place and in this election, we will follow the law strictly. Whoever will be elected by the members will win as per the law,” the Clerk said.

The nine who had returned their nomination forms were ODM’s Kennedy Ng’ondi, Benson Mutura of UDA, Ahmed Gubow, Austin Amimo, Ooko Okero, Arthur Ndung’u Ngugi, Hassan Robbow Mohhamed, Samwel Masaki, Charles Kio Muratha and Brain M Mutie.