Kilifi Governor Amason Kingi on Wednesday survived a petition challenging his election and the focus has now shifted to his ally, Mombasa chief Hassan Joho’s case to be determined Friday.
The High Court in Malindi dismissed the petition by former Labour Cabinet Secretary Kazungu Kambi challenging Mr Kingi’s victory and ordered the petitioner to pay costs of Sh4 million.
Justice Weldon Korir said the petitioner failed to provide proof that the August 8 General Election was marred by electoral malpractices.
The judge termed the petition fatally defective, saying it ought to have been dismissed at the first instance for failing to include Kilifi deputy governor Gideon Samburi as one of the respondents.
Justice Korir said Mr Kambi, who came in third in the gubernatorial election race on a Kadu Asili party ticket, failed to prove that a truck containing electoral materials was intercepted at Kilifi North tallying centre.
“The petitioner also alleged three election officials were arrested in Malindi constituency after failing to identify and verify voters in the Kiems machine,” he said.
Mr Kambi had cited a polling station in Malindi sub-county at Kakuyuni, Majivuni and Msabaha playground polling centres where more than 40 people were arrested while casting their votes even though they had not been identified by the system.
However, the judge said Mr Kingi’s lawyer had argued that election officials were presumed innocent until proved guilty since the matter was still pending before the court.
According to justice Korir, the electoral team declared that Mr Kingi garnered 218,696 votes followed by Mr Gideon Mung’aro of Jubilee Party with 56,547 votes while Mr Kambi got 44,470.
Hundreds of Mr Kingi and Mr Kambi'a supporters witnessed the ruling.
Also present were the deputy governor, county assembly Speaker Jimmy Kahindi and incoming county secretary Jefwa Mkare.
Addressing journalists outside Malindi Law Courts after the judgment, Mr Samburi said the case was based on mere hearsay and they had been sure of a win.
“We want to urge our competitors to join us in developing the region for the good of the residents of Kilifi,” he said.
That was the second petition against Mr Kingi to be dismissed by the High Court.
Last year, the High Court threw out a petition by a Jubilee supporter.
Together with Mr Joho, Mr Kingi, also the Kilifi ODM chairman, is a key pointman for Nasa at the Coast.
Mr Joho faces a petition challenging his election filed by former Senator Hassan Omar.