, NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 29 – A case challenging the eligibility of Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta and William Ruto for the presidency due to charges they are facing at the International Criminal Court has been dropped.
A group of civil society activists through advocate Ambrose Weda told a three-judge bench on Thursday that the issue of integrity could not be addressed fully if other presidential aspirants were not part of the lawsuit.
“Two months ago, the court struck out the names of the five people who wanted to be brought in so that the issue of integrity is dealt with once and for all and Kenyans go for election knowing what kind of leaders they have. As of today, the only respondent we had was the Attorney General,” they said.
Describing their decision to drop the petition as tactical, the activists said they will file what they term as “the mother of all petitions” that will encompass all presidential candidates.
“We are seeking orders against honourable Uhuru Kenyatta, William Ruto, Raila Odinga, Musalia Mudavadi and Kalonzo Musyoka and we need questions of integrity to be investigated and determined,” they vowed.
Weda called on Kenyans to be patient and vigilant especially with regard to the matter.
“These documents are ready and the presentation can be any time from this afternoon. It is not predicated upon election. Even if you are elected and issues of integrity come up, we will impeach you. Kenyans should be patient as we resolve the issue of integrity to the last letter.”
The applicants were individual voters, the Kenya Youth Parliament, and the Kenya Youth League as well as some of the people who were displaced from their homes during the bloody upheaval that shook Kenya after the December 2007 presidential poll.
The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission chairman Issack Hassan had previously said that the commission would not bar Kenyatta and Ruto from being on the ballot next year as long as they are given the all clear by the courts.
Justices Isaac Lenaola, Mohammed Warsame and Lady Justice Philomena Mwilu allowed the petitioners to withdraw the case saying it was their constitutional right.
The judges ruled that it was also within the group’s right to bring another petition before the court.
The chaos that followed the disputed election left 1,133 people dead and 650,000 displaced from their homes.
The two are due to stand trial at the ICC in April 2013.
Kenyatta and Ruto are due to announce a pre-poll coalition ahead of the December 4 deadline.