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High Court halts Athletics Kenya elections

Athletics Kenya Vice-President, Lt. Gen (Rtd) Jack Tuwei addresses the press in a past function at Riadha House. PHOTO/ Raymond Makhaya

NAIROBI, Kenya Apr 28 – The High Court in Nairobi has stopped the scheduled Athletics Kenya elections that started on April 27 2017 from ward level, pending the hearing and determination of a petition before the court.

The case presented before Justice Chacha Mwita by among others retired athlete Moses Tanui and nine others argue that the elections are being held under a contentious constitution passed last year.

The petitioners’ lawyer Kibe Mungai, told court that the sport’s body has already commenced the elections from the ward level culminating in national polls on May 10, but should not continue as the legality of the constitution is the subject of contention.

“The petitioners contend that no free and fair elections of Athletics Kenya can be carried out under the regime of the impugned constitution,” Mungai told the High Court on Friday.

Kibe also submitted that AK through its president Gen (Rtd) Jackson Tuwei and his deputy Paul Mutwii had secured registration of the body under the Sports Act (2013) in an opaque means just to have the elections held.

The lawyer further noted his clients only learned of the changes through media, thus pushing them to move to the corridors of justice in search of a solution.

He urged the court that it is imperative for the petitioners to be heard and the case be determined so as to substantiate the legitimacy of the Athletics Kenya constitution.

The petition challenges the constitution review process that Athletics Kenya set on motion which led to what they term as ‘undemocratic and unconstitutional’ amendment of the constitution..

In his instruction, Justice Mwita said the elections would be halted and only continue after a decision is reached with the hearing set for May 10.

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