Two voters in Mombasa challenging the registration of the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition Party have been directed to serve suit documents to other parties via an advert in local newspapers of wide circulation.
Justice John Mativo of the High Court in Mombasa gave Mr Kelvin Omondi and Ms Fatuma Saidi three days to do so.
Political parties in the coalition agreement have been joined in the petition as ordered by the court and some were yet to be served with suit documents when the case was mentioned on Wednesday.
Mr Omondi and Ms Saidi have challenged the registration of the party through a coalition agreement deposited with the Registrar of Political Parties.
They argue that the Deed Agreement (coalition agreement) establishing the party is null and void.
They claim the agreement was entered in breach of the Political Parties Act (PPA) and the basic requirements for coalition agreements as provided for in the law.
“The Deed Agreement is a nullity and void for violation of any law and norm under the Political Parties Act, nothing comes out of it,” they argue.
They have sued the Registrar of Political Parties, Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) and the party.
The petitioners claim that Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition party is an entity unknown in law and unconstitutional as its registration has failed to meet statutory and constitutional threshold for registration of a political party.
They want a declaration issued to quash the registration of the coalition agreement (Deed of Agreement) in respect of Azimio la Umoja
One Kenya Coalition party and a Gazette Notice and the nomination made by the party for being in conflict with the constitution and the PPA.
Mr Omondi and Ms Saidi said if the party’s aspirants are cleared to participate in the August 9 polls or are elected, that would be a nullity that would cause a constitutional crisis thus undermining democracy and the rule of law.
“The Deed of Agreement is inconsistent with various provisions of the Constitution as it seeks to curtail the freedom of association and political rights as enshrined under the Constitution thus infringing … the right of citizens to make political choices,” the petition states.
The petitioners argue that the coalition agreement was entered in an opaque manner and as registered voters, they are entitled to any information pertaining to it as they are allowed to make an informed decision on their preferred candidates or coalition in the coming polls.
They say the membership of constituent parties in the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition Party and unsuspecting members of public are currently and will eventually on August 9 participate, support, associate and fund the party that has been unconstitutionally registered thus violating the Constitution.
The petitioners accuse the Registrar of Political Parties of approving the registration of the party and the depositing of the agreement yet they don’t comply with the law.
They argue that the IEBC is likely to spend and waste public funds in preparations, clearing various candidates affiliated to the party, and printing ballot papers and other materials that will be contrary to proper use of public funds.
The petitioners also want a declaration issued to quash the coalition agreement dated March 12, 2022 as null and void.