Uhuru suffers setback as registrar rejects expulsion of Sabina, Kega

From left: Former President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Jubilee team, (Secretary-General) Jeremiah Kioni, (Chairman) Saitoti Torome, (vice-chairman) David Murathe and (Chairperson Youth League) Angel Mbuthia.

Photo credit: Nation Media Group | Pool

Retired President Uhuru Kenyatta has suffered a setback in his bid to reclaim control of the Jubilee Party after the Registrar of Political Parties Anne Nderitu temporarily declined to expel rebel MPs citing missing documents.

The Office of the Registrar of Political Parties (ORPP) has demanded the list of delegates who attended the Special National Delegates Convention (NDC) before it can ratify the resolutions made.

This implies the expulsion of party rebels, including nominated MP Sabina Chege, East African Legislative Assembly (Eala) MP Kanini Kega and National chairman Nelson Dzuya cannot be effected.

It also means that the new officials picked by the NDC to replace the rebels cannot assume office pending the provision of the required documents.

Former MPs Jimmy Angwenyi, Naomi Shaban, Joshua Kutuny, Mutava Musyimi and Rachel Nyamai were expelled during the NDC.

The delegates also endorsed the appointment of former Planning Principal Secretary Saitoti Torome as the new national chairman, replacing Mr Dzuya.

Mr Yasin Noor was named deputy secretary-general, replacing Mr Kutuny. Former MP Jamleck Kamau was appointed national director of elections, replacing Mr Kega. Jubilee Party also appointed Ms Pauline Njoroge as its new deputy organising secretary.

“Following a review of the submitted documents, this office is unable to address the substance of the resolution for non-submission of requisite documents…,” said Ms Nderitu in a letter dated May 29, which was addressed to Jubilee Secretary General Jeremiah Kioni.

Duly signed list

“…a duly signed list of attendance with identification numbers to ascertain composition of the NDC and quorum in line with Articles 8.1(1) and 23 of the Jubilee Party constitution respectively,” adds the letter.

ORPP has also demanded “comprehensive minutes of the NDC meeting to, inter alia, determine the process and mode of election given that only an extract of minutes was submitted.”

The office requires the documents to determine if the May 22 NDC was properly convened by Mr Kenyatta.

It also seeks to establish if the change of venue from Bomas of Kenya to Ngong Racecourse was procedurally done and whether the resolutions made meet the set threshold.

In a swift rejoinder, Mr Kioni has accused Ms Nderitu of supporting the rebels by frustrating the implementation of the resolutions.

He said they were surprised that ORPP was for the first time asking for a list of delegates.

“We have never in the past received a letter of this nature. Why has she found it necessary to ask for this kind of information? It can only tell you one thing; she is acting on behalf of our detractors,” said Mr Kioni.

He added, “We are already aware that they are trying to alter the list of our members so that when we provide them with those who attended they tell us they are not our members. She is actively involved in this coup.”

Working on the list

He, however, said the party was working on the list and would soon submit it to ensure the changes adopted by the delegates are implemented.

But Ms Nderitu dismissed the allegations, stating that all political parties are regulated by the same law.

“All these documents we are asking for are provided for in law and the party constitution where quorum should be determined,” said Ms Nderitu.

According to the Jubilee Party constitution, the quorum for all meetings of all the Party Organs shall be one-third of all the members entitled to attend.

It was not immediately clear the total number of delegates the party has but the Kega side claimed that the party has a total of 19,500 delegates.

A third of this number translates to 6,500. Mr Kioni on Friday declined to disclose the exact number of delegates, claiming the information could be exploited by their rivals.

Days before the NDC that was held last week, Mr Kioni had indicated that they expected a total of between 4,000 and 5,000 delegates.

Jubilee Deputy Secretary General Joshua Kutuny claimed that they have information that only 2,500 individuals attended the NDC.

Total attendees

He claimed that of the total attendees, Jubilee registered members were only 400.

Mr Kenyatta controversially proceeded with the NDC even after the party’s Internal Dispute Resolution Committee said the decision to convene the meeting was made in an irregular National Executive Council (NEC).

The committee said the NEC by Mr Kenyatta held on April 28 that set the date for NDC did not meet the required quorum.

The Kega-led faction had also indicated that the change of venue was done irregularly.

They claimed that changing venues requires at least a seven-day notice.

Mr Kenyatta announced the new venue a day before the NDC.