, KISUMU, Kenya, Aug 23 – Siaya Governor Cornel Rasanga has lost his seat after the High Court in Kisumu nullified his win, citing massive electoral malpractices.
Rasanga becomes the first Governor to lose his seat following an election petition that had been filed by William Oduol, who lost in the March 4 elections.
While cancelling the win on Friday, Justice Aggrey Muchelule noted that Rasanga’s campaign and subsequent election were marred by fraud and there was need for a repeat poll.
Muchelule directed that voters in Siaya will now go to the polls again to elect a Governor.
In the two hour ruling, Muchelule pointed out a litany of electoral malpractices against Oduol including how his posters were defaced and in some instances pictures of President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Deputy William Ruto superimposed on them.
Oduol had sought the seat on a National Agenda Party ticket.
“I return the verdict that the third respondent was not validly elected as the Governor of Siaya County during the General Election held on March 4. A certificate issued to this effect shall be returned to the electoral commission,” declared Justice Muchelule.
The judge also observed that in some instances ODM luminaries led by Siaya Senator James Orengo and Gem MP Jakoyo Midiwo invaded Oduol’s campaign rallies forcing him to walk away.
In one incident at Ludhehe, ODM supporters including Orengo came with more powerful loud speakers and took over Oduol’s function forcing him to leave.
The judge also noted how Midiwo referred to Oduol as a murderer who shot his wife forcing him to parade his wife and family to the electorate.
And in yet another incident at the Siaya municipal stadium, the judge observed how former Prime Minister Raila Odinga referred to Oduol as a wild cat as he paraded the preferred ODM candidates.
“The petitioner will be paid his full costs by the first and third respondents which considering the work done in the petition shall be capped at Sh3 million,” said the judge.
The judge also noted that the margin used by the Independent, Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) to declare Rasanga as the winner was erroneous after a vote recount in some areas reduced it by 897 votes.
The judge said that there were a number of alterations in some form 35’s which were not countersigned by the agents and returning officers.
“In total the third respondent garnered 80,254 votes according to the recounts in Bondo, Gem and Rarieda constituencies compared to 88,358 votes according to the declared results,” noted the judge.