MPs sworn in despite pending court cases

Friday August 27 2010

Swearing in of members of parliament on August 27, 2010. PHOTO / JENNIFER MUIRURI

Swearing in of members of parliament on August 27, 2010. PHOTO / JENNIFER MUIRURI  

By NJERI RUGENE [email protected] AND CAROLINE WAFULA [email protected]

MPs with pending court cases were sworn in alongside their colleagues despite reservations over their integrity to hold office under the new Constitution.

House Speaker Kenneth Marende ruled that the MPs had a right to take a fresh oath of office in line with the Constitution until their cases were determined.

“If upon such determination it is found that any person who was sworn into office ought not to have been sworn or that any person holding any office is not eligible or is disqualified from holding such office, appropriate
orders and reliefs will be issued and all persons, including the Speaker of the National assembly will be obliged to abide,’’ he told the House.

Mr Marende made the ruling immediately after he was taken through the oath of allegiance to the new Constitution by National Assembly Clerk Patrick Gichohi.

He then administered a similar oath to his deputy and Lagdera MP Farah Maalim and the rest of MPs, including President Kibaki, Prime Minister Raila Odinga and Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka.

The President and the PM, walked in when the ceremony had already started and took their oath between 3.50pm and
3.53pm. They left 15 minutes later for State House to continue with the day’s programme.

Ikolomani MP Boni Khalwalwe on Thursday sought the Speaker’s guidance as to whether Cabinet ministers and MPs implicated in corruption and those with pending cases should take fresh oaths.