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Uhuru moves to court over poll chaos

NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 7 – Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta on Friday moved to court seeking orders to quash a decision by Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNCHR) linking him with the post election violence.

Mr Kenyatta, who is also the Gatundu South MP, termed as oppressive the decision of the commission as contained in a report that was presented to the Waki Commission of Inquiry into Post Election Violence (CIPEV).

He said the impugned conclusion was made public on August 8, 2008 and he only managed to get a copy of the report recently where his name is mentioned as being among those who financed and planned the post poll chaos.

The Minister through his lawyer Desterio Oyatsi told Justice Roselyn Wendoh, that the object of the intended judicial review proceedings and the commission was to obtain an order to quash its decision linking the applicant to election violence.

The court heard that the commission presented the report to the Waki Commission entitled “On the brink of the precipice. A human rights account of Kenya’s post 2007 election violence” which said the Minister was involved in the violence.

The report indicated that the Minister participated in the planning of the said violence by organising finances to fund pro-Kikuyu organised gangs in Central Province.

Mr Oyatsi told the court that the false accusation was made without giving his client a hearing, saying it deprived the applicant his right to defend himself.

The commission had no jurisdiction to exercise investigation and make a decision, which had no probative value, he complained.

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The lawyer further argued that the commission made adverse findings against the Minister, while knowing it had no jurisdiction do so. It ought to have conducted the applicant to adduce his side of the story to controvert the allegation made against him.

“The respondent was unreasonable and applied double standards in the said investigations by giving other affected parties the right and opportunity to be heard, while denying the applicant his rights to do so” the lawyer submitted.

The court heard that the commission was not candid in its findings when it presented the report to the Waki team with the names of those involved, but failed to make them public.

“The applicant was never informed that he had been linked to post election violence, the commission made a very big omission and its finding must be quashed,” the lawyer maintained.

The court certified the application as urgent and allowed the judicial review proceeding to quash the decision linking the applicant to the violence.

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