AG wants People’s Assemblies declared unconstitutional

January 23, 2018 10:31 am
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In the petition filed by the Deputy Chief State Counsel, Charles Mutimba, the Attorney General Githu Muigai told a Milimani court on Monday that the actions by fifteen county assemblies which have so far constituted the forums were a violation of the Constitution and should, therefore, be quashed/FILE

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 23 – The Office of the Attorney General has filed a petition in court challenging a move by county assemblies allied to the National Super Alliance (NASA) to establish People’s Assemblies.

In the petition filed by the Deputy Chief State Counsel, Charles Mutimba, the Attorney General Githu Muigai told a Milimani court on Monday that the actions by fifteen county assemblies which have so far constituted the forums were a violation of the Constitution and should, therefore, be quashed.

Muigai also sought prohibitory orders restraining other county assemblies from establishing People’s Assemblies.

“The respondents are in contravention of Article 1(3) of the Constitution by the purported exercise of the Sovereign power of the people in a manner not provided for in law,” the petition read.

The petition sought a declaration that: “respondents are in violation of Article 2(2) of the Constitution by purportedly exercising State authority in a manner not authorized under the Constitution and the law.”

County assemblies of Mombasa, Kwale, Kilifi, Mandera, Kitui,  Machakos, Makueni, Kakamega, Vihiga, Bungoma, Busia, Siaya, Kisumu,  Homa Bay and Migori have been listed as respondents in the matter.

The said counties passed resolutions to form People’s Assemblies between November 8 and December 9, 2017.

The Council of Governors has been catalogued as an interested party.

The State Law Office also wants the fifteen county assemblies found to be in violation of Section 98 of the Penal Code as their actions amount to “undermining a lawfully established government.”

Muigai also wants the assemblies surcharged for misuse of public funds.

“The respondents are in breach of Article 201, Article 255 of the Constitution and section 92(2) of the Public Finance Management Act by spending public resources in a course that is outside their constitutional mandate.”

NASA has since the swearing of President Uhuru Kenyatta on November 28 vowed to lead a defiance campaign maintaining that they do not recognize his victory in the October 26 presidential election conducted after the August 8 presidential election was annulled by the Supreme Court on September 1.

NASA presidential candidate Raila Odinga and his running mate Kalonzo Musyoka who announced an election boycott on October 10 now say they will be sworn in as President and Deputy President on January 30 blaming President Kenyatta’s Jubilee Party for failing to agree on a dialogue on poll reforms.

Recently NASA strategist David Ndii claimed that the alliance would use the August 8 poll results as the basis for the swearing in of Odinga and Musyoka.

“By the act of annulling Uhuru Kenyatta’s victory, the Supreme Court of Kenya validated Odinga’s election victory on August 8,” he said.

“If Kenyatta’s election was null and void, it stands to reason that the election was won by someone else and that person is Odinga and his running mate, Musyoka,” Ndii said during a news conference on Thursday last week.

He said that the People’s Assemblies would hold a national convention and thereafter push for changes in the country’s electoral system and national government executive structure.

“We must agree on how to share power and exercise it responsibly, how to share opportunities equitably and above all how to coexist peacefully as distinct communities brought together by the cruel fate of colonialism,” Ndii stated.

So far, NASA has held People’s Assembly meetings in Machakos and Mombasa.

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