MATHENGE GETS REPRIEVE IN NYERI GUBERNATORIAL RACE.

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BY SAM ALFAN

It is a reprieve  for Nyeri gubernatorial candidate, Dr Thuo Mathenge after high Court suspended his disqualification pending the outcome of his petition challenging the revocation of his nomination.

Justice George Odunga issued temporary orders stopping the nullification of Dr Mathenge’s nomination by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) pending the outcome of the judicial review application to be heard in Nyeri tomorrow (June 21).

Dr Mathenge cried foul that he was issued with the nomination certificate to contest the seat as an Independent candidate on June 2 only to be notified of his disqualification by the IEBC returning officer, Aluisa Kanini Kimani, on June 15.

The aggrieved candidate, through lawyer Kioko Kilukumi, said he stook to suffer tremendous loss and damage by being unlawfully excluded from participating in the August 8 Geneal Election. The IEBC will soon publish the names of all candidates in the officialKenya Gazette, he said.

Dr Mathenge said he learnt from the returning officer that his nomination had been revoked following the June 8 decision by the IEBC Disputes Resolution Committee. He was neither informed about any complaint regarding his eligibility nor invited to attend the proceedings, he explained in court papers.

“The decision to revoke the certificate of nomination in unlawful, unreasonable and procedurally unfair in violation of Article 47 (1) of the Constitution. The committee illegally, unlwfully and without jurisdiction out-sourced its decision-making power to the Leadership and Integrity Committee,” Dr Mathenge pointed out.

 

He said he was never furnished with the committee’s decision or offered written reasons for the administrative action which have adversely affected his fundamental rights and freedom to seek elective office. He had participated in the 2013 General election after having been validly nominated, he said.

Dr Mathenge recalled that he had filed a petition against former Nyeri Governor, the late Nderitu Gachagua, in which the Court of Appeal expressed doubts about the legitimacy of his degree certificate and directed that investigations be carried out to ascertain the truth. After the police had conducted a probe, the file was submitted to the Directorate of Public Prosecutions for advice.

The prospective candidate said the DPP formally informed the deputy registrar of the High Court in Nyeri, on September 29, last year, that there was insufficient evidence to prove that the degree certificate presented to the relevant authorities was not genuine or was a forgery.

In April, Court of appeal Justice Wakiaga ordered the Director of Public Prosecutions to investigate the validity of the degree, which he said was awarded by Uganda-based Fairland University.

But Mathenge filed an appeal where a three-judge Bench held that he started being referred to as Dr Thuo when he started opening medical clinics in Kiambu and Nairobi.

The judges also supported the directive to open a probe on how he got his degree.

Mr Ngacha has demanded that the party explain why it accepted Mathenge’s nomination papers.

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