ODM in fresh bid to block swearing in of MCA

Perpetua Mponjiwa Okello in a Nairobi Court on February 19, 2020.

Photo credit: Paul Waweru | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • ODM says Ms Mponjiwa is a 'stranger' to the party and that it only recognises Ms Eve Malenya as its nominee.
  • Temporary Speaker John Kamangu implores ODM to explore an alternative court avenue on the matter

A three-year battle between ODM and Nairobi nominated MCA Perpetua Mponjiwa has intensified, with the party blocking attempts to have her sworn in by the county assembly, despite a new court order. 

Attempts to have Ms Mponjiwa take the oath of office as ODM’s nominated ward rep have twice proved futile — in April 2019 and July this year — with the party saying it only recognises Ms Eve Malenya as its nominee.

Ms Malenya was de-registered from the IEBC nomination list last year following a successful court case by Ms Mponjiwa.

However, Ms Malenya sought court orders to stop the swearing-in of Ms Mponjiwa.

She said that she was the right person for nomination as MCA, asking the court to suspend the April 5, 2019 gazette notice on Ms Mponjiwa's swearing-in.

Ms Malenya argued that Ms Mponjiwa ran as an independent candidate in the 2017 General Election and was therefore ineligible to be nominated or elected.

ODM has now put a spirited effort at the county assembly to stop a new attempt to swear in Ms Mponjiwa. 

This is after the High Court issued another order mid last month giving the assembly two weeks, up to October 1, to have Ms Mponjiwa sworn in.

Stranger to the party

However, ODM through Minority Leader Michael Ogada, objected to the swearing-in, arguing that Ms Mponjiwa is a “stranger to ODM”, having resigned several years ago from the party.

He cited Article 177(2) of the Constitution of Kenya, 2010 read together with Section 37(1) of the Elections Act 2011 on the nomination of special seat members and allocation for the special seat respectively.

"In light of the provisions therefore, the position is a preserve of ODM and the party cannot have a member who belongs to a different party being imposed on us," Ogada said.

"In view of this it will be in total contravention of the law for this honorable House to give a nod and proceed to swear in a member who resigned from the ODM on May 8, 2017 and as such has never been recognized by the very party she purports to cling on," he said. 

Temporary Speaker John Kamangu implored ODM to explore an alternative court avenue on the matter as the assembly cannot give any alternative direction or ruling beyond the said ruling of the High Court. 

"The proceedings of this Assembly are regulated by the rule of law, and that as law maker, we are bound by it. In the light of the said court order and the contestation by the Minority side that the said Perpetua should not be sworn in on the floor of this Assembly, I am therefore unable to give any alternative direction. However, the Constitution envisages the right to appeal to any order before a court of law, which I therefore implore upon the Minority side to explore," Kamangu said.