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March 21, 2018

22 politicians file election petitions, rulings in six months

 A file photo of former Embu Senator Lenny Kivuti. /REUBEN GITHINJI
A file photo of former Embu Senator Lenny Kivuti. /REUBEN GITHINJI

Twenty two aspirants have filed petitions challenging outcomes of the August 8 general election.

They include former Embu Senator Lenny Kivuti, who filed papers in bulk last Friday, against Governor Martin Wambora's victory.

Kivuti lost narrowly to Wambora, garnering 96,775 votes against his 97,760. 

His lawyers Tom Ojienda and Wilfred Nyamu, and supporters, accompanied him when he went to file the documents. His petition will be handled at the Embu High Court.

More on this: Ex-Senator Kivuti files petition disputing Governor Wambora's win

The Kerugoya court will handle one petition for a Senator contest. The other 20 cases are for ward representative contests and will be handled at magistrates' courts in the respective locations.

The areas are Garissa where there are three petitions, Hamisi (one) Kakamega (three), Kericho (one), Kapsabet (one), Kilgoris (one), Kisii (two), Kisumu (one) Kitui (one), Kwale (one), Lamu (one), Marimanti (one), Milimani Commercial Courts (one), Nakuru (one) and Wajir (three).

In a statement on Monday, the Judiciary noted petitions other than for the presidency will be determined within six months from the date of filing.

Ward representative petitions will be handled at magistrates' courts and the rest at High Courts.

"Any persons intending to contest the results of the election is required to file the election petitions within 28 days of the date of declaration," they said.

At 9am today, the Supreme Court started hearings on NASA principal Raila Odinga's petition against Jubilee Party boss Uhuru Kenyatta's win in the presidential election.

The petition will be determined within 14 days from the date of filing.

Last year, the Judiciary proposed that the number of days to hear and determine a presidential petition be increased from 14 to 30 days.

Speaking during the judges' annual colloquium in Mombasa, Justice David Maraga, who chaired the Judiciary Committee on Election Petitions, said the current period of time is too short.

He said the judiciary had written a memo to Parliament three times seeking an amendment of the law. He said they would table the fourth petition, hoping Parliament would agree to the proposal.

Read: 14 days inadequate to hear presidential petition – judges

Also read: Three options for Supreme Court in NASA petition

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