PENDING HEARING

Ombeta takes fight for UDA Bonchari nomination to court

Says two-thirds gender rule might force the party to quash his candidacy and hand ticket to a female aspirant

In Summary

•He said IEBC has refused to receive the list until the party complies.

•Through lawyer Elias Mutuma, Ombeta has urged the court to bar the commission from rejecting the list pending a hearing and determination of his case.

UDA offices in Kilifi county which acts as the headquarters.
UDA offices in Kilifi county which acts as the headquarters.
Image: ALPHONCE GARI

UDA nominee for Bonchari MP seat Cliff Ombeta has moved to court seeking orders to compel IEBC to accept the party's nomination list without subjecting it to the requirements of the two-thirds gender rule.

Ombeta is apprehensive that the application of that requirement might force the party to quash his nomination and hand it over to a female aspirant to meet the gender principle.

He said IEBC has refused to receive the list until the party complies.

Through lawyer Elias Mutuma, Ombeta has urged the court to bar the commission from rejecting the list pending hearing and determination of his case.

Mutuma said UDA conducted nominations within the stipulated timelines and solved the disputes, ensuring a fair, open and transparent process.

“The decision is otherwise erroneous, unreasonable, biased, unlawful and mathematically wrong in that it does not factor in the 47 women nominated by UDA for the position of county women representatives,” reads court papers.

According to court papers, on May 5, UDA was given 48 hours to revise its nominations lists in compliance with the two-thirds gender rule failure to which it will reject the list for the position of MP and Senator across the country.

In his affidavit, Ombeta said plans are in top gear to replace his candidature and other male candidates with female names to comply with the two-thirds gender rule.

He has faulted the commission for failing to set proper criteria for the revision of the list of the nominated candidates to ensure a free and fair process which reflects the wishes and interests of the electorates.

“The directions and actions therein will in every way deny competent candidates and in turn replace them with incompetent ones who will not in their undertakings serve the interests of the citizens,” Ombeta said.

He said the measures to be taken in revising the lists of nominated candidates fail to involve the people in choosing their preferred candidates to achieve the two-third gender rule.

“There is no power accorded to IEBC to bar parties from participating in general elections by mere reason of noncompliance of the two-third gender rule,” reads court documents.

Ombeta said it's illegal for IEBC to penalise innocent aspirants and voters by barring them from exercising political rights when the duty bearer to ensure administrative and statutory mechanisms have been devised to ensure the two-third gender principle is realised.

 

Edited by Kiilu Damaris

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