Wednesday September 11, 2019-Jubilee candidate in Kibra Parliamentary race, McDonald Mariga was yesterday locked out of the race to replace the late Ken Okoth as Kibra MP.
This came despite his close association with Deputy President William Ruto, who pushed him to vie for Kibra seat in the upcoming by-election scheduled for November.
The decision by IEBC to lock him out of the polls will obviously be contested by a quick perusal on the law, indicates that he's by fact, on the wrong side.
His biggest blunder was to register as a voter on 26th August, 10 days after IEBC officially gazetted a by-election in Kibra, a move that makes his candidature null and void.
According to Elections Act of 2016 Cap 36, voter registration is an ongoing exercise.
However, it ceases to be 60 days to a general election or when a constituency is gazetted to conduct a by-election. In this case, Mariga was late by 10 days.
"Voter registration ceases to continue in case of a by-election has been gazetted. The exercise kicks off immediately or after the election is over."
For Kibra, IEBC set November 18th as the exact date for continuous registration and verification, a move that further complicates matters for Mariga.
Earlier, advocate Omwanza Ombati had also ruled out Mariga on technical grounds. He said that the only official register is the one used in 2017 since the current one is yet to be adopted.
"It's a technical case. He registered three weeks ago. His name hasn't been adopted as a voter in compliance with the law. Adoption takes time. He will be locked out," he said.
Further, Ombati adds, should IEBC ignore that fact, still Section 36 of the Registration Act of 2016 will have Mariga knocked out of the race.
"Assuming he gets away with that, now that his name isn't in the register, revision needs to be done. By law, he will have to wait until November 18th to be cleared," he added.
For Ruto, he has other choice rather than quickly front another candidate, just like the case of Mutula Kilonzo Jr and her sister Kethi Kilonzo in 2013 in which Ruto and his cronies pushed for the disqualification of Kethi.
The Kenyan DAILY POST