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What’s at stake for Uhuru, Raila, Chebukati and Chiloba after Supreme Court full ruling
By The Standard | Updated Sep 21, 2017 at 11:42 EAT
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What's at stake for these men?
SUMMARY

Judges of the Supreme Court led by CJ David Marga released the full ruling on the presidential election petition on 20th September 2017

The repeat presidential election is set to be held on October 17th 2017

Uhuru Kenyatta (Jubilee Presidential Candidate)

The President will head into the repeat election seeking to prove that he won the August 8 poll fair and square. On the face of the Supreme Court decision to annul his win, the President told his supporters that his election was stolen, and said the Supreme Court had acted on political whims.

Crucially for the president, the Supreme Court did not cite him for any electoral malpractices. This means that he will be going into the repeat election convinced that he is paying for sins of omission and commission perpetrated by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission. As he heads to the repeat poll, Uhuru will be keen to avoid the one-term president tag.

Raila Odinga (NASA Presidential candidate)

The former Premier will have a second chance to wrestle the presidency from President Uhuru Kenyatta. He heads into the election buoyed by the Supreme Court victory and emboldened that he was vindicated in his claims that the elections were marred by irregularities and malpractices.

Having been handed a lifeline, Raila will likely pull all stops to ensure he makes good use of his last bullet. At stake for him is his often repeated assertion that he has the numbers to floor President Kenyatta in a free and fair election. A loss would dent this claim.

Wafula Chebukati (IEBC Chair)

If there is one man who could be feeling the burden of the world on his shoulders, it is the IEBC Chair. The institution he heads emerges from the Supreme Court decision a battered outfit and Mr Chebukati will need to rebuild its public confidence ahead of the repeat poll. The electoral agency will be seeking to avoid the August 8 mistakes.

The Supreme Court in its decision found that IEBC bungled the election despite gobbling up billions of shillings in procurement and logistics. Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu said IEBC became a law unto itself during the election. As he prepares to lead his team into the fresh poll, Chebukati will also be reminded of the warning by Chief Justice David Maraga that the court will arrive at a similar decision should the issues canvassed during the petition be presented again.

Ezra Chiloba (IEBC CEO)

He is the man the Opposition has trained its guns on in the face of the nullification of the Presidential poll. So far, he has resisted calls to quit. At stake for him is how he will handle the inevitable pressure in the aftermath of the Supreme Court ruling.

Should he survive, Mr Chiloba faces the herculean task of ensuring that all the technical and logistical aspects of the elections work like clockwork. He will also be keen to distance himself from perceptions that he takes the greatest responsibility for the bungling of the election. More worrying is the possibility of criminal proceedings for his role, if any, in the bungling of the poll.

Justice David Maraga (Chief Justice)

The elaborate ruling given by the Supreme Court will in the coming days be scrutinised page by page, both at home and abroad. Legal scholars will seek to identify strengths and gaps, in what will ultimately inform its value as a legal authority. Justice Maraga, as the President of the Supreme Court, will be judged on the legal soundness of the biggest decision ever delivered by an African court.

He also walks the path of assuring the country that the highest court in the land has walked the narrow path of integrity and fidelity to truth. In the face of criticism from Jubilee that the Supreme Court played politics in its decision to annul the presidential result, the CJ will look upon history to vindicate him. Petitions filed against two Supreme Court judges- Deputy CJ Philomena Mwilu and Isaac Lenaola will also test the integrity of the Supreme Court decision in the coming days.

Githu Muigai (Attorney General)

The government chief’s legal advisor was a friend of the court (amicus curiae) in the hearing of the presidential petition. His legal opinion to the Government as the country gears for a fresh poll will be crucial. The AG's opinion will be closely watched especially with regard to procurement of electoral equipment.

Ekuru Aukot (Thirdway Alliance Presidential candidate)

He has filed a petition at the Supreme Court asking that his name be included in the fresh presidential poll. In his petition, he has faulted the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission for limiting the number of candidates who will participate in the fresh election to two-President Kenyatta and his main competitor Raila Odinga. Should the petition succeed, Mr Aukot will get a second chance on the presidential ballot.

 

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