UDA primaries losers protest at high charges for lodging disputes

Nominated MP Wilson Sossion speaks to the press on April 15, 2022.

Photo credit: Vitalis Kimutai | Nation Media Group

Deputy President William Ruto’s United Democratic Alliance (UDA) is facing a storm after aspirants who lost in the party’s primaries protested the high fees they will be required to pay to the party to have their complaints heard.

Hopefuls unhappy with outcome of the primaries will be required to pay Sh200, 000 for governor contestants, Sh100,000 for Senate and National Assembly seats while county assembly aspirants will pay Sh20, 000.

This is on top of the nomination fees the aspirants paid. A governor hopeful paid Sh500,000, Senate and woman representative (Sh250,000) and Sh50,000 for ward representative.

UDA Dispute Resolutions Committee Chairman Emmanuel Mumia yesterday assured those protesting the outcome of the primaries of a fair hearing.

“We encourage the aggrieved parties to show up with their evidence and pay the filing fees. They will all be given an equal chance. We will interrogate the issues before giving recommendations within 24 hours of the filing,” Mr Mumia said.

UDA conducted nominations for the August 9 elections in 36 counties on Thursday. The exercise was postponed to next Tuesday due to logistical challenges and chaos in some areas.

But aspirants in different regions have faulted the nomination, saying it was unfair and full of irregularities.

More than 24 hours after the end of the primaries, some areas were yet to complete tallying and issue certificates.

A number of hopefuls camped at the party headquarters protesting the decision yesterday.

According to Mr Boniface Nyamu, a Kasarani MP aspirant, the party is discouraging aspirants from seeking justice.

“We are surprised that UDA is demanding such huge amounts to listen to us. Even the High Court and Court of Appeal filing fees are not that high. They do not want us to seek justice,”Mr Nyamu, a lawyer, said.

The Elections Act provides that disputes arising from party primaries and nominations be solved first through the party’s internal dispute mechanism before being presented to the Political Parties Dispute Tribunal and finally the High Court.

Nomination disputes should also be resolved internally by April 22, according to the elections regulations.