Two Mombasa voters want registration of Azimio coalition revoked

Raila Odinga

Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition Party presidential aspirant Raila Odinga. Two petitioner want the outfit disbanded claiming the coalition agreement establishing it is null and void.

Photo credit: Francis Nderitu | Nation Media Group

Two voters in Mombasa have challenged the registration of the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition Party through an agreement deposited with the Registrar of Political Parties.

Mr Kelvin Omondi and Ms Fatuma Saidi argue that the Deed Agreement (coalition agreement) establishing the party is null and void.

They claim that it was entered in breach of the Political Parties Act (PPA) and the basic requirements for coalition agreements as provided for in the Act.

“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,” argue the two voters in their petition filed at the High Court in Mombasa.

They have sued the Registrar of Political Parties, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) and the party.

The petitioners claim the party is an entity unknown in law and unconstitutional as its registration does not meet the statutory and constitutional threshold for registration of a political party.

They want the court to quash the registration of the coalition agreement (Deed of Agreement) and a Kenya Gazette notice announcing it and the nomination made by the party because it “violates” 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.

Justice John Mativo has directed the petitioners to amend their petition and enjoin all parties to the coalition agreement as interested parties within three days.

The judge said that he noted from the documents filed that the coalition agreement was signed by many parties that have not been enjoined in the petition.

“The parties are necessary to these proceedings because they may individually or collectively be affected by the outcome of the petition,” said Justice Mativo.

Justice Mativo further added that no court can knowingly issue an order that is likely to affect a party that is not before it.

The case will be mentioned for directions on May 25.

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