A voter will have to pay Sh2 million in costs after she voluntarily withdrew a petition challenging the victory of Malava MP Malulu Injendi in the August 8, 2017 elections.
The move came as a reprieve for Mr Malulu who clinched the seat on Jubilee ticket.
Lawyer Steve Luseno who represented Mr Malulu said his client was not interested in being awarded costs in the petition. He said Malulu wanted to focus on serving the electorate in Malava Constituency.
The petitioner, Ms Gilphine Omwenga is the wife of Ford Kenya candidate Mr Burudi Manyasi who unsuccessfully contested the parliamentary seat.
High Court Judge Janet Mulwa awarded the costs to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) and the retuning officer, Mr Isaac Rutto.
EVIDENCE STRUCK OUT
The petitioner decided to withdraw the case after the court struck out evidence contained in her affidavits. She told then court she had personally obtained the evidence.
The judge said the voter had illegally obtained access to polling stations and tallying centres in the constituency while she was neither an agent nor a candidate but only a spouse of one of the candidates.
Ms Omwenga told the court that she had further participated in collating and tallying of votes in tallying centres.
In her ruling, Justice Mulwa said the petitioner’s conduct bordered on an election offence under provisions of the Election Offences Act, 2016.
“For the record, the petitioner is a trained lawyer and therefore expected to be knowledgeable in legal issues and provisions of the law including electoral laws and offences,” said the judge.
The judge further said, “I have considered the petitioner’s application to withdraw the petition and the grounds put forth for the decision. I am satisfied that the mandatory procedure and steps stated under Rule 21 and 22 of the Elections (Parliamentary and County Elections) Petition Rules 2017 have been complied with.”