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Court orders Opiyo Wandayi back to House

By Luke Anami | July 4th 2016
Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi being escorted from parliament during President Uhuru's State of the Nation address. The ban imposed on the Ugunja MP by Speaker Justin Muturi has been suspended until an application he made is heard and determined. (PHOTO: COURTESY)

Nairobi: The ban imposed on Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi by Speaker Justin Muturi has been suspended until an application he made is heard and determined.

This means that the MP who was suspended for 11 months can now resume sittings until the matter is heard in court. High Court judge George Odunga yesterday said, the court has the powers to intervene in matters even where institutions involved have the mandate to make own decisions.

The MP was banned for breaching parliamentary rules.

Wandayi, who was among CORD MPs who led a whistling protest immediately President Uhuru Kenyatta stood to address the nation, disobeyed Mr Muturi’s orders to vacate the House severally, forcing the speaker to invoke the standing order. Public Relations According to Parliamentary Standing Order 111, if a member refuses to withdraw when required to do so, s/he should be forcefully kicked out.

It reads: “The Speaker...shall order such Member to be removed and such Member shall thereupon without question be suspended from the service of the House during the remainder of the Session...” Wandayi was frog-marched out of Parliament precincts by parliamentary orderlies.

Speaking to journalists outside Parliament the MP said he could not allow the President to address the House and do his “public relations” while Kenyans are suffering.

"We cannot allow the President to continue lying to the nation, tribalism and corruption have consumed the country,” said Wandayi. Other MPs kicked out in the melee were Fred Outa (Nyando), Millie Odhiambo (Mbita), John Mbadi (Suba), TJ Kajwang’ (Ruaraka), Gladys Wanga (Homa Bay County MP) and Homa Bay Senator Moses Kajwang’.

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