NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 14 – Tharaka Nithi Senator Kithure Kindiki was on Thursday afternoon elected as the Senate Deputy Speaker after garnering 38 votes beating his only challenger, Narok Senator Ledama Ole Kina who got 17 votes.
The voting exercise was forced to go to round two after the two candidates failed to garner 44 out of 67 votes required for one to be declared winner; consequently Senate Speaker Kenneth Lusaka was compelled to order the Senators to return to the ballot.
“The threshold is supposed to be 45 votes which has not been met and therefore we shall take a second vote in accordance with the standing order number seven,” said Lusaka.
The standing order number seven of Senate dictates that “If no candidate is supported by the votes of two-thirds of all the Senators, a fresh election shall be held,” reads part of the statement.
12 Senators however, opted to skip the exercise that saw Kindiki carry the day and upon being sworn in, he promised to faithfully and diligently work for the people of Kenya.
“I will do right to all manner of persons in accordance with the constitution of Kenya and the laws and conventions of Parliament without fear or favor affection or ill will, so help me God,” said Kindiki.
Jubilee Party enjoys a majority of Senators in the House having 39 with the opposition, National Super Alliance (NASA), having 28 Senators.
On Wednesday, Senate Clerk, Jeremiah Nyegenye told Capital FM News that it was only Kindiki and Ole Kina who had successfully managed to return their nomination papers beating the deadline.
The Opposition outfit – since the nullification of the August 8 presidential election – has said it will not acknowledge President Uhuru Kenyatta authority to open Parliament and will therefore not participate in its business until the fresh presidential election is conducted on of October 17.
Immediately after the election, the Opposition members who availed themselves for the vote stepped out leaving the Jubilee Senators behind and they went on ahead to approve the party’s seven members to its House Business Committee.
The seven include: Speaker Lusaka, Majority Leader Murkomen, Deputy Majority Leader Fatuma Dullo, Majority Whip Susan Kihika and Senators Johnson Sakaja (Nairobi), Samwel Poghisio (West Pokot) and Mohamed Maalim (Mandera).