Mwau: Supreme Court has no power to rule on polls date

Thursday November 3 2011

By PAUL OGEMBA [email protected]

An MP has challenged the power of the Supreme Court to determine the date of the next General Election.

Kilome’s Harun Mwau filed an application seeking to stop the Supreme Court from giving an advisory opinion on the election date, saying, it has no authority to determine matters of constitutional interpretation.

He argues that Article 163 (6) of the Constitution limits the advisory opinion of the Supreme Court to matters relating to the running of county governments, adding that by admitting an application by the Interim Independent Electoral Commission, it was usurping powers of the High Court.

Last week, the Supreme Court admitted the petition after ruling that it is a matter of great public importance, which should be determined by a full bench of not less than five judges. (READ: Court gives nod to election date case)

The polls commission wants the court to determine the date for electing the President, members of the National Assembly, the Senate, governors and members of County Assemblies as provided for in the Constitution.

It argues that the confusion raging as to when voting will be held must be resolved immediately to enable it to begin planning for the conduct of the General Election and that there is ambiguity in interpreting the Constitution.

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