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Ruto’s camp reinstated to Senate leadership

Deputy President William Ruto’s allies have won round one of the stormy divorce between the DP and President Uhuru Kenyatta after securing an order suspending the Jubilee-Kanu post-election coalition deal.

The Political Parties Disputes Tribunal (PPDT), in a ruling dated May 12, also suspended any action accruing from the deal.

This means that based on the order, Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen and his Nakuru counterpart Susan Kihika remain as Majority Leader and Majority whip respectively.

West Pokot Senator Samwel Poghisio (Kanu) had on Monday been elected as the Majority Leader in a Jubilee parliamentary group meeting.

The meeting was attended by Mr Poghisio, Baringo senator Gideon Moi and nominated Senator Abshiro Halakhe based on the strength of the post-poll deal that has now been suspended.

“In the interest of justice, an interim order be and is hereby issued declaring that any decision or action founded on the coalition agreement purportedly signed between Jubilee Party and Kanu and deposited on May 4, 2020 and approved or confirmed by the registrar of political parties on May 8, 2020 is null and void and off no effect,” the tribunal ruled.

Ms Kihika had in a letter to Senate Speaker Ken Lusaka protested the changes made at State House, Nairobi, saying that the Senators at State House were less than the half of all Jubilee members required, and that no vote was taken to confirm the changes.

“The requirements that make it mandatory for more than half of the senators to remove a Majority Leader or Minority Leader was not met . . . No vote was carried out as required by the Standing order 19 to remove the Majority Leader and the Majority whip,” Ms Kihika said in the letter.