Group seeks to stop Punguza Mizigo debate by counties

Monday July 29 2019

Thirdway Alliance Kenya party leader Ekuru Aukot addresses Nakuru MCAs on July 24, 2019 on the Punguza Mizigo Bill. The High Court has certified as urgent a petition seeking to stop county assemblies from debating the referendum Bill. PHOTO | JOHN NJOROGE | NATION MEDIA GROUP


The High Court has certified as urgent a petition seeking to stop county assemblies from debating the proposed amendment of the Constitution fronted by Thirdway Alliance Kenya party, popularly known as Punguza Mizigo.

Justice Jacqueline Kamau directed David Kamau Ngari and International Economic Law Centre to serve the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), the Speakers of the National Assembly and the Senate and 47 Speakers of county assemblies through a newspaper advertisement.

The judge directed that the case to be mentioned on July 30.


In the petition, Mr Ngari argues that the Bill was procured through deceit and illegalities since the signatures are not genuine.

Further, he said the uniformity of the signatures raises the question of authenticity and reliability of the signed forms.


He said the verification process of the signatures was impossible because the electoral body does not have a repository of specimen signatures for comparison.

Mr Ngari said the verification process was done mechanically yet the law says voters should be registered biometrically.

He said the alleged verification and approval of the Bill is unconstitutional, null and void.

The petition further says IEBC does not have the quorum as there are only two commissioners and the chairman.

This was after four other commissioners resigned.


Mr Ngari said the quorum required to receive, verify and approve a proposed Bill for amendment under popular initiative under Article 257 of the Constitution should be at least five.

"The IEBC as presently constituted lacks constitutional competence and technical capacity to admit, process and approve the proposed Bill together with the supporting documents and signatures of registered voters as presented," reads the petition.

The petitioners want the court to stop Thirdway Alliance from presenting the Bill to the Speakers of the 47 counties for debate and approval.