Tribunal reinstates Kioni, Murathe days after parties registrar approved expulsion from Jubilee
What you need to know:
- Tribunal deals major blow to Ms Nderitu's decision to recognise the Kanini faction.
- The tribunal has also stopped Ms Nderitu from acting on the decision of a Jubilee NDC to expel the three top officials.
A tribunal has reinstated embattled Jubilee Secretary-General Jeremiah Kioni, Vice Chairman David Murathe and Treasurer Kagwe Gichohi to their party leadership positions, coming just days after registrar of political parties Anne Nderitu confirmed their expulsion.
The Political Parties Dispute Tribunal's (PPDT) decision issued on May 22 is likely to add to confusion at the former ruling party in an ownership war between a faction led by Sabina Chege and Eala MP Kanini Kega on one side, and former President Uhuru Kenyatta, Kioni and Murathe on the other.
The Chege/Kanini faction is leaning towards Kenya Kwanza which is led by President William Ruto.
In the ruling delivered Monday evening, the PPDT has dealt a major blow to Ms Nderitu's decision to recognise the Kanini faction by suspending the party's NDC resolution of May 10, 2023 during which Kioni, Murathe and Gichohi were kicked out as members of Jubilee.
"Pending the hearing and determination of the application (filed by Kioni) inter partes, interim conservatory orders are hereby issued staying the decision delivered by the Jubilee Party National Disciplinary Committee on May 10, 2023 to expel Murathe, Kioni and Gichohi from membership of the party," the tribunal led by chairperson Desma Nungo ruled.
The tribunal further stops Ms Nderitu from acting on the decision of the Jubilee NDC to expel the three top officials from its membership list.
"Interim conservatory orders are hereby issued prohibiting the Registrar of Political Parties from acting on any communication from the Jubilee Party and it's NDC purporting to expel them from membership of the party," Nungo ruled.
The Tribunal's order was issued on May 22 while the Registrar acted on the NDC's resolution and ratified the expulsion on May 19, two days earlier.
According, to the tribunal, Kioni, Murathe and Gichohi will remain in office until May 31 when their complaint will be heard.
The tribunal has certified the case by the Kioni faction as urgent and ordered them to serve Jubilee Party and its NDC with their court pleadings and the order.
Further, Nungo granted the party five days to file their responses to the allegations.
The matter will be mentioned on May 31, 2023 for further directions.
The Kioni faction had petitioned the tribunal while challenging their removal from the party following their ouster. They are seeking to be officially restored into Jubilee Party leadership.
They argue that the decision to oust them, done by Jubilee disciplinary committee on May 10, was flawed and illegal.
They were accused of alleged misconduct and non-adherence to party rules and constitution.
The NDC decision on May 10 was followed by a ruling by the tribunal that the party had not exhausted all internal dispute resolution mechanisms when it decided to kick them out.
The tribunal had referred the matter back to the party after saying that it was not convinced that the Jubilee NDC meeting held on February 10, 2023 in a hotel in Naivasha was properly convened.
During the Naivasha meeting, Kioni was replaced by Kega who was appointed Acting Secretary-General while Eldas MP Adan Keynan was appointed national vice-chairperson to replace Murathe. Gichohi was replaced by Kitui South MP Rachel Nyamai.