Kethi Kilonzo out of Makueni senate race

July 8, 2013 1:09 pm
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The IEBC Tribunal has ruled that Kethi's name does not exist in the voter register anywhere in the country/fFILE
The IEBC Tribunal has ruled that Kethi’s name does not exist in the voter register anywhere in the country/fFILE
NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 8 – It was in a courtroom that Kethi Kilonzo was epitomised as a brilliant lawyer by the thousands who watched the presidential petition in March. It was again in a courtroom that her presumed unimpeachable character came under attack, with the electoral commission’s Nomination Disputes Resolution Committee coming short of calling her a liar.

The dispute resolution committee chairman Thomas Letangule fell short of calling Kethi a liar when he wondered how she could claim to be a registered voter, yet she could not recall the exact station at which she enlisted.

“It is worth noting that the respondent did not seem to know the physical location of the registration centre where she went to register as a voter,” Letangule observed.

He went on to state that even if Kethi’s story were to be believed, she should not have been registered in the first place as she did not possess valid identification documents given she claimed to use a copy of her ID and an out-of-date passport in the registration process.

“Even if it was indeed assumed that the second respondent presented herself for voter registration, it is clear that she would not have been validly registered as a voter since by her own admission she did not have her original identification card or passport as required to register as a voter,” Letangule said in their ruling.

“It is worth noting that the respondent did not seem to know the physical location of the registration centre where she went to register as a voter,” Letangule observed.

He went on to explain that the absence of her name from the Greenbook (the voters’ roll) used in Langata constituency – where she had claimed to have been registered – was an indictment in itself as per the ruling issued by the Supreme Court on March 30.

“Section two of the Election Act is clear that a voter is someone whose name is entered in the register of voters. The committee heard from (Immaculate) Kassait that the second respondent’s details do not appear in the biometric register and the non biometric register… Kassait and (Teresia) Mwai testified that the green book is the original data source for voter registration. The Supreme Court in its above mentioned decision also found that the green book was part of the register of voters,” Letangule read out.

Letangule went on to discount claims that the Greenbook referred to had been tampered with explaining that no evidence had been adduced to support her allegation.

“We also note that the first respondent (Kethi) in cross examination of the second respondent witnesses claimed that the ballot box containing the Greenbook register produced before the committee had been tampered with by National Security Intelligence Service (NSIS) however the first respondent has not filed an affidavit or put its witness on the stand to provide the particulars of this allegation.”

Kethi, Letangule added, indicted herself by failing to verify her voter registration details.

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