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Narok County Governor Tunai's challenger to pay Sh4m in suit

By Isaiah Lucheli | July 9th 2015

A Narok gubernatorial election loser, Ladema Olekina, will have to pay the cost of a poll petition he lost following a Supreme Court ruling.

Narok County Governor Samuel Tunai

Yesterday, the highest court on the land upheld a decision by the Court of Appeal that had ordered Olekina to pay the costs of the petition challenging the election of Samuel Tunai (pictured) that he lost.

In their judgement, judges Kalpana Rawal, Mohamed Ibrahim, Jackton Ojwang', Smokin Wanjala and Njoki Ndung'u said the court did not have jurisdiction to consider whether the Court of Appeal properly exercised its discretion in determining costs.

"For the avoidance of doubt, the Orders of the Court of Appeal on costs remain undisturbed. The appeal is dismissed," the judges ruled.

Olekina had filed a suit at the Supreme Court after his attempt, to have an order on cost, quashed by the High Court and appellate court failed. He had appealed the High Court's decision to dismiss the petition challenging Tunai's election but later withdrew the suit and sought to challenge the cost awarded.

On costs, the Court of Appeal specified and restricted the ones awarded by the High Court which stated that Tunai and the deputy governor get Sh1 million each, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission Sh500,000 and other respondents were to get amounts ranging from Sh50,000 to Sh750,000 bringing the total amount to Sh4.5 million.

In his petition to the Supreme Court, Olekina argued that the appellate court erred in law by concluding that the irregularities committed in the governor's election did not violate the election or materially affect the results of the election, considering the standard set under in the Constitution.

Made mistake

The election irregularities were established by the petitioner through scrutiny of the exercise and was admitted to by the 3rd-10th respondents, the petition said.

He said the appellate court made a mistake by concluding that the election was held substantially in accordance with the law.

"The Court of Appeal erred in law by ordering the appellant to pay costs despite the errors committed by the respondents," he submitted.

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