Irrelevant events to remember as Supreme Court decides again

Saturday November 18 2017

Supreme Court

Supreme Court judges from left: Njoki Ndung'u, Smokin Wanjala, Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu and Chief Justice David Maraga consult each other on November 16, 2017 during the presidential election petition proceedings. They will make a ruling next week. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By OTIENO OTIENO
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With the Opposition having not shown up for last week’s Supreme Court presidential petition III, the legal teams of the IEBC and President Uhuru Kenyatta clearly had a field day.

Well-heeled and massively deployed, the Uhuru-IEBC veterans pressed their less experienced Civil Society and John Harun Mwau combined in their own half and hounded them all over the place during the three days of a dull courtroom duel.

Even the likes of 'Subreme Mullah', still smarting from the embarrassing September 1 loss to the Nasa team, somehow looked to be in good form, going in two-footed against much-weakened opponents right to the last minute.

PROTESTS
Chief Justice David Maraga and his team of six judges will on Monday declare the winner – a decision that will be purely based on the weight of evidence presented in court.

A much-reduced chance of an upset has taken the excitement out of the Supreme Court verdict.

And, the epicentre of Kenya’s protracted power battle has since shifted to the streets anyway.

But there might still be a bit of fun remembering the irrelevant events inside and outside the courtroom, even if they have absolutely no bearing on Monday’s verdict.

MWILU'S DRIVER
Friday, November 17: Three days to the reading of the judgment, police announce the recovery of two guns in Nairobi’s Dandora Estate on Thursday, including one believed to have been snatched from Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu’s driver three weeks ago.

The driver was also shot by his attackers during the October 24 incident.

Tuesday, November 14: Supreme Court adjourns shortly after the start of the pre-trial conference, presumably to address a complaint raised by Harun Ndubi, advocate for two of the petitioners, about a colleague denied court entry by police.

HARASSMENT

It marks the beginning of a pleasant treatment for the petitioners’ legal teams whose icing on the cake is a Sh80 million bill quoted by the IEBC for photocopying of the voters’ register.

Monday, November 6: Katiba Institute, the non-governmental organisation (NGO) associated with respected law scholar Yash Pal Ghai, reports electricity supply to their office was cut off the previous day.

In a number of tweets in the next three days, the NGO links the power blackout to its suspected involvement with the petition eventually filed by the civil society election observer group Kura Yangu Sauti Yangu.

COURT QUORUM
Wednesday, October 25: A day to the repeat presidential election, Kenya’s Supreme Court hits the global headlines for its now famous quorum hitch.

Chief Justice Maraga, cutting a lonely figure on the expansive bench, says the hearing of a case filed by three voters seeking postponement of the election can’t take off because only two of them (the other one is Justice Isaac Lenaola) have reported for duty.

Of course, the absentees include Deputy Chief Justice Mwilu whose bodyguard was shot and wounded in Dagoretti the previous day.

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