Not over till it’s over: Poll losers petition courts

Gubernatorial candidates Evans Kidero (Homa Bay) and Wangui Ngirici (Kirinyaga).

Gubernatorial candidates Evans Kidero (Homa Bay) and Wangui Ngirici (Kirinyaga) have challenged the wins of Gladys Wanga and Anne Waigur respectively.

Photo credit: Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • Mr Ngirici wants Ms Waiguru's victory nullified and another gubernatorial election conducted.
  • In the Homa Bay petition, Dr Kidero claims the exercise was marred with irregularities allegedly committed by the IEBC during tallying of results.
  • A voter has filed a petition challenging the victory of Nyamira Governor Amos Nyaribo, who was elected on a United Progressive Alliance (UPA) party ticket.

Losers in the August 9 General Election have started filing petitions challenging the results at the High Court.

In Kirinyaga County, a bruising legal battle is in the offing, with former Woman Representative Wangui Ngirici protesting the re-election of Ms Anne Waiguru as governor.

And in Homa Bay, former Nairobi governor Evans Kidero has also gone to court seeking to overturn Ms Gladys Wanga’s victory in the lakeside county’s gubernatorial race.

Mr Ngirici wants Ms Waiguru's victory nullified and another gubernatorial election conducted in strict compliance with the Constitution.

She claims the election was marred by irregularities and did not fulfil the requirements and principles of the law.

Ms Ngirici, who ran as an independent candidate, claims the election was rigged in favour of Governor Waiguru of the United Democratic Alliance (UDA).

Ms Waiguru garnered 113,008 votes against Ms Ngirici's 105,677.

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) and Kirinyaga County returning officer Jane Gitonga are cited as the first and second respondents, respectively.

Ms Ngirici accuses IEBC of failing to put in place appropriate structures and mechanisms to prevent electoral malpractices.


She argues that the electoral process was unverifiable and that IEBC abdicated its constitutional role by conducting an election that was not based on universal suffrage and free expression of the will of voters.

She further argues that IEBC failed to exercise impartiality and efficiency.

Ms Ngirici claims there were obvious anomalies in the forms used to declare her opponent the winner of the poll.

She claims the returning officer relied on forms 37A that were “either not signed by presiding officers or signed but not stamped to declare the winner of the election”.

She also argues that the authenticity of the forms and the results cannot be verified.

She alleges massive bribery of voters and illegal alterations of forms 37A.

She also claims that some of her agents were kicked out of polling stations and could not witness voting or verify the results.

She says there was abnormally high voter turnout in Gichugu constituency, where her opponent garnered a lot of votes, while voting at some polling stations went beyond 6 pm in total disregard of election regulations.

Ms Ngirici also claims her agents’ signatures were forged in a well-orchestrated scheme to rig the election in favour of Ms Waiguru.

The integrity of the election, she argues, was greatly compromised by making false entries of election results at various polling stations.

She urged the court to quash the election certificate issued to Ms Waiguru.

Kidero petition

In the Homa Bay petition, Dr Kidero claims the exercise was marred with irregularities allegedly committed by the IEBC during tallying of results.

In the petition, the former county chief further claims there were acts of violence, voter bribery and intimidation during the poll that ensured the outcome of the exercise was not just.

He has listed IEBC, Returning Officer Fredrick Apopa, Governor Wanga, her deputy Oyugi Magwanga and the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party as first, second, third, fourth and fifth respondents respectively.

Ms Wanga who vied on an ODM ticket got 244,559 against Dr Kidero’s 154,182 votes. Dr Kidero vied as an independent candidate.

In the petition filed through Okweh Achiando and Company Advocates, Dr Kidero claims that, even though he was the more popular candidate, the Orange party resorted to using all means necessary to ensure he did not win the governor's seat.

Dr Kidero also wants the court to order IEBC to produce all the election materials relating to the 2022 gubernatorial elections in Homa Bay County.

He further wants a forensic audit, scrutiny of all equipment, systems and technologies, and a re-count and re-tallying of all the returns with respect to the polling stations whose results were questioned.

Should the court confirm malpractice, Dr Kidero wants Ms Wanga to step down and IEBC to organise and conduct a fresh gubernatorial election in strict conformity with the Constitution and the Elections Act.

He also wants the Director of Criminal Investigations (DCI) to investigate possible election offences allegedly committed during the election.

Nyaribo victory challenged

At the same time, a voter has filed a petition challenging the victory of Nyamira Governor Amos Nyaribo, who was elected on a United Progressive Alliance (UPA) party ticket.

Mr Dennis Omwenga Ayiera, a close associate of Mr Walter Nyambati, who vied and lost on a UDA ticket, lodged the case at the High Court in Nyamira.

In Kisii County, Kitutu Chache South parliamentary candidates Andrew Maubi (Wiper) and Samuel Omwando (independent) have filed a suit at the Kisii High Court challenging the election of ODM’s Antony Kibagendi as MP.

The case against Mr Nyaribo also has his deputy James Gesami, Nyamira County Returning Officer and IEBC as respondents.

Mr Omwenga says he was Mr Nyambati’s chief agent and the Nyamira County election manager for UDA.

Mr Nyaribo was declared the governor-elect on August 12 having garnered 81,980 votes against his closest challenger, Mr Nyambati, who managed 49,339 votes.

“He [Nyambati] is joined in the proceedings owing to the significant interest he has in the outcome of the application and petition,” the petition reads.

According to the declared results, the difference between Mr Nyaribo’s votes and those of Mr Nyambati was 32, 641. 

The petitioner, through his lawyers Nchogu, Omwanza and Nyasimi Advocates state that he is contesting the declared results because of five main reasons.

“There were two different forms 37C, harassment of the UDA agents who were, as a result, denied participation in the counting and tallying of results, alteration of the result declaration forms, differing results from multiple polling stations between forms 37A and form 37C and other discrepancies as will be highlighted specifically,” the petition read.

There were 12 governor candidates in Nyamira. The county has 323, 291 registered voters, 179, 719 of whom turned out to vote, representing 55.59 per cent of the total registered voters. The county has 643 polling stations in four constituencies — Kititu Masaba, Borabu, North and West Mugirango. In Kitutu Chache South, Dr Maubi and Mr Omwando — through their advocate Mr Shadrack Wamboi — insisted that Mr Kibagendi won in an election that was not free and fair. They said they were harassed by goons and their agents chased out of polling stations. Constituency Returning Officer David Cherop declared Mr Kibagendi the winner with 14,478 votes.

Mr Kibagendi beat nine other candidates in the election with his closest competitor, Dr Maubi, getting 10,378 votes.

In third place was Mr Eric Abuga (UPA) who got 4,131 votes, while Mr Omwando got 3,471 and Cynthia Toel (Jubilee) got 2,738 votes. Kitutu Chache South Constituency has a total of 66,980 registered voters spread across five wards — Kitutu Central, Nyatieko, Nyakoe, Bogeka and Bogusero.

According to Mr Cherop, only 40,517 registered voters participated in the election and 22,778 voters chose to abstain this year.

Mr Kibagendi, who served as a Director for Youth Affairs in the Office of the Deputy President, replaced the long-serving MP, Mr Richard Onyonka, who won the Kisii County senatorial seat.

Kitutu Chache South was split from the larger Kitutu Chache to create Kitutu Chache South and Kitutu Chache North constituencies in 2013.

Reporting by Ruth Mbula, George Odiwuor and George Munene