Africa-Press – Kenya. The High Court sitting in Mombasa has declined a request to withdraw a petition seeking to block former Nairobi governor, Mike Mbuvi Sonko, from contesting for the Mombasa gubernatorial seat in the August 9 polls.
While making a determination on Tuesday, May 24, Justice John Mativo declined a prayer by the petitioner, Ndoro Kayuga, to withdraw the petition, stating that his plea did not meet the required standards to have the matter withdrawn.
Justice Mativo directed the case be heard and determined despite Kayuga withdrawing from the matter.
“The court may proceed to hear the petition despite the wishes of the petitioner to discontinue,” the Judge ruled.
In his application, Kayuga had requested to withdraw from the case stating that he had discovered that the impeachment of the former governor was political.
“Through an interview, I came to learn that his (Sonko) tribulations and the impeachment were more political than legal,” the petitioner stated.
“The first petitioner be and is hereby allowed to withdraw from this petition and is discharged from these proceedings immediately,” Mativo directed.
Upon the withdrawal of Kayuga from the case, Justice Mativo directed George Odhiambo, who was also a petitioner in the case to pursue the petition to its logical conclusion.
Odhiambo, who was represented by his lawyer, Willis Oluga, expressed that he would take over from Kayuga asking the court to retain the affidavit that was entered by Kayuga during the initial application.
Oluga noted that the affidavit was key to the case further revealing that they would file a similar affidavit in the event that Kayuga’s affidavit was also withdrawn.
“The first petitioner (Kayuga) is at liberty to exit the petition but should not go with the affidavit, however, if the affidavit is withdrawn, we will make the same averments as those of the first petitioner,” he stated.
In their petition, Kayiga and Odhiambo argued that Sonko was illegible to contest for any elective office has been impeached in 2020.
“Having been found unsuitable to hold the office of the Governor of Nairobi City County, Sonko is equally unsuitable to hold any other state office,” the petitioners argued.
Amid debate on the clearance of politicians with active court cases, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) chairperson Wafula Chebukati stated that they will not clear candidates who have been impeached and have exhausted all the legal frameworks to overturn their impeachment from office.