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Supreme Court-Kenya’s poll body grossly violated procedures and law in August vote

Storyline:National News
Kenyan Supreme Court judges, from left to right, Njoki Ndung’u, Deputy Chief Justice Philomela Mwilu, Chief Justice David Maraga, Jackton Ojwang and Isaac Lenaola deliver their detailed ruling concerning the August presidential elections, at the Supreme Court in Nairobi, Kenya Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2017. AP Photo|Sayyid Abdul Azim)

Kenya’s Supreme Court has delivered a stinging criticism on the country’s electoral body for what it termed as gross violation of electoral procedures and the constitution observing cumulatively, the acts of omission and commission rendered the Presidential poll null and void.

In its full ruling Wednesday, the apex Court observed the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) out-rightly violated electoral procedures citing unsigned results forms, lack of forms and security features bringing into question the legitimacy and authenticity of the documents used and transmission of results.

“The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) flouted the law and the constitution to the extent that they become the law themselves. On our part, elections is not just an event but a whole process, this is also described in IEBCs handbook,” said Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu.

Mwilu also ruled out evidence by the respondents that observers had given the electoral process a clean bill of health. “Hardly any of the observers interrogated the process beyond the casting of the vote.”

Chief Justice David Maraga said out of the 291 forms 34Bs which emanate from the constituency tallying centre, 56 did not bear watermarks, 31 had no serial numbers, 5 were unsigned while 2 had not been stamped by the returning officer and 32 had not been signed by the party agents.

Maraga said the illegalities and irregularities were of such substantial magnitude that any court could not make approve. In effect, the Chief Justice noted, the elections did not meet the simple test the results notwithstanding.

The IEBC announced Uhuru Kenyatta winner with 8, 223, 369 while Raila Odinga, the petitioner got 6, 822, 812.

The Court ordered the IEBC to adopt a complimentary system in the fresh elections as instructed by the Court earlier.

The Presidential elections were neither transparent nor verifiable, Lady Justice Mwilu said and effectively ruled, “We have no choice but to nullify it.”

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