Why Ekuru Aukot wants Raila barred from running for President

Tuesday, June 7th, 2022 12:18 | By
Thirdway Alliance party leader Ekuru Aukot. PHOTO/Courtesy

Thirdway Alliance Party leader Ekuru Aukot has written to the IEBC seeking to have Azimio la Umoja-One Kenya alliance presidential candidate Raila Odinga barred from running.

According to Aukot in the letterdated June 5, 2022, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) erred in clearing Raila to run for president under the Azimio Coalition Party.

Aukot says that The Azimio la Umoja-One Kenya alliance is a corporate entity hence cannot be allowed to field a Presidential candidate under the current laws.

"Membership of the Azimio La Umoja comprises fully registered political parties only that include and not limited to Jubilee, NARC Kenya, Orange Democratic Movement Party, KANO, UPIA, Wiper, among others. 100% membership of Azimio la Umoja being political parties out rightly bars the political party from fielding a presidential candidate for an election. The members of this coalition political party are corporate entities, and are not citizens of Kenya. The Constitution of Kenya 2010 provides that only registered voters can aspire to vie in Elections. Corporate entities such as the membership of Azimio La Umoja have no constitutional right to vote or even to be entered into the register of voters by the IEBC," argues Aukot.

Ekuru Aukot
Ekuru Aukot. PHOTO/Courtesy

Aukot says that only natural persons can be members of a political party; they must also be citizens of Kenya, and only registered voters of a party can be fielded as candidates.

"If Azimio La Umoja were to field a candidate, it has to be one of its corporate members, which in itself is a misnomer and unknown to the law. To even contemplate doing so would be to render the all exercise nugatory and laughable from the outset. The Constitution of Kenya 2010 under article 99 (1) (c) provides that "(i) Unless disqualified under clause (2), a person is eligible for election as a member of Parliament if the person—(c) is nominated by a political party, or is an independent candidate who is supported—". The word person as used in the constitution refers to a natural person; not a legal person," he added.

Raila is state sponsored

Aukot also alleges that Raila is state-sponsored to an extend of being advertised on government website that is hosted using state resources.

"The candidate is state-sponsored and several Cabinet Secretaries that include and not limited to CS Joseph Mucheru (Ministry of ICT Innovation & Youth Affairs), CS Peter Munya (Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries & Cooperatives), CS Dr Fred Matiang'i (Ministry of Interior & National coordination of National Government) and PS Kibicho (Ministry of Interior) have been blatantly campaigning for the Azimio La Umoja Candidate," said Aukot.

Raila Odinga in a past event. PHOTO/Courtesy
Raila Odinga at a past event. PHOTO/Courtesy

Aukot has threatened to move to court to force IEBC to drop Raila's name from the list, in case the electoral body does not change its mind and quash Raila's clearance.

"We advise the commission to revoke the nomination of Raila Amolo Odinga alongside his running mate (Martha Karua), immediately. In the event that the Commission ignores our advice and this complaint and proceeds to gazette the said candidates, we shall move court to quash the illegal decision. The rule of law must be followed at all times. Kenya is a country of laws and a democracy," he added.

Aukot disqualified from presidential race

On Sunday, June 5, 2022, Aukot was disqualified from the Presidential race for failing to provide copies of the identity cards of his supporters.

Aukot ran for president in 2017 and garnered 27,311 votes. In the October 26, 2017 repeat presidential elections, Dr Aukot got 21,333 votes countrywide.

So far, only four candidates have been cleared by IEBC to run for president including Raila Odinga, Deputy President William Ruto, Prof George Wajackoyah of Roots Party, and lawyer David Mwaura Waihiga of the Agano party.

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