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Lawmaker Beatrice Kwamboka loses nomination bid

Nominated senator Beatrice Kwamboka has failed in her bid to access and scrutinize files of 16 candidates shortlisted by the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party for nomination to the Senate.

Ms Kwamboka, whose name is not on the nomination list wanted the Tribunal to issue an order compelling ODM through its Secretary General to produce before the Tribunal copies of the files of the candidates whose names were published by the electoral agency on July 27.

She also wanted to be given the same copies to help her establish the impropriety alleged in the nominations, such as shortlisting of non-party members.

She sought the order to have information supplied to her for purposes of scrutinizing the same so as to verify if all those nominated were duly nominated in accordance with the law.

But the Tribunal chaired by Fred Orego dismissed the request and declined to issue the scrutiny order after finding that Ms Kwamboka failed to give specifics of the candidates she alleges were not members of the ODM party.

“Ms Kwamboka is seeking to challenge the nomination of the 16 Women for the Senate. She is alleging that some of them may not have been qualified for nomination on the basis that some of them were not members of the party. She has however, not narrowed to who is not an alleged party member among the 16 women nominated,” the Tribunal said.

Had the allegation been that all of them are not party members, perhaps it would have given this Tribunal sufficient cause to consider a grant of the prayer, it added.

“We therefore find that the prayer sought has been pleading with extreme generality that seeks a blanket leave to scrutinize all documents with the hope of stumbling upon some anomaly so as to aid the appeal. Similarly, it has not been demonstrated to this Tribunal that failure to grant the orders sought will materially affect the Appeal,” the Tribunal stated.

Ms Kwamboka filed the appeal claiming that ODM had left her out of the 16 shortlisted women candidates for Senate.

Her Lawyer Danstan Omari told the Tribunal that strangers from other political parties such as Wiper, Narc-Kenya and UDA have been shortlisted and that wife of a top party official is in the list.

Arguing that there was nepotism in the shortlisting of the candidates, Mr Omari claimed that the said wife is currently a nominated MCA.

“Ms Kwamboka was left out because strangers and unmerited people were given the positions. She is seeking justice. Laws were flaunted to benefit cronies and relatives. There are people irregularly on the list. The Party is scandalized by people given jobs to select candidates for the nomination but they failed. They should face serious disciplinary action,” stated Mr Omari.

He added that there was no justification of leaving Ms Kwamboka out as she had applied for the nomination slot and is qualified.

But the party, through lawyer Jackson Awele, said there was no evidence of the alleged nepotism or cronyism and shortlisting of non-party members.

He added that there was also no justification on why Ms Kwamboka must be selected since all applicants were treated equally.

“The only grievance is that Ms Kwamboka submitted an application for nomination and was not considered. All the other issues such as giving out positions to other people are an after-thought. Why does she think her application should be considered than those of others who sought the same?” he asked.

He stated that there was also no evidence that wife of a top official had been shortlisted for nomination.

“No evidence to warrant disturbance of the list. The fact that she is an MCA, does not bar her from being nominated again. The law only bars nomination of those nominated twice,” said the lawyer.