Supreme Court Judges,Opposition skip Uhuru’s Parliament Address
Supreme Court Judges and Opposition Legislators failed to attend the joint sitting of the house to mark the start of the 12th parliament presided by Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday.
Opposition MPs were at a political rally eight kilometers away in Kibera,Nairobi conveyed by the Opposition National Super Alliance as president Uhuru addressed the house.
Out of the 136 MPs from parties allied by the Nationa Super Alliance,NASA,only two law makers- Alfred Sambu (Webuye East) and Charles Gimose (Hamisi) of Amani National Congress and Ford Kenya respectively attended the function. This was despite the fact that a number of the Opposition MPs, including Chris Wamalwa (Kiminini), Ferdinand Wanyonyi (Kwanza), and Godfrey Osotsi, being seen in the precincts of the National Assembly earlier in the day. See Also:IEBC Appoints a Seven Member Team for Presidential Election Repeat
Mr Sambu defended his decision to attend the first session graced by President Kenyatta, saying he did not attend any meeting to decide whether to attend the function or not.
“Someone just made an announcement that we should skip the function without consulting us. I attended the event because it was a national function and there is no harm in listening to the speech of the President,” he said.
On Monday, NASA co-principal Moses Wetang’ula announced that Opposition MPs would not attend the opening of the 12th Parliament, arguing that President Kenyatta does not have the power to convene the opening of the new House. “NASA and the judges seem to be speaking the same language. It is not a coincidence that the Opposition skipped the national event and they did the same,” said Sirisia MP John Waluke. Read also:Jubilee Rejects New IEBC Team, Chebukati tells them off
All indications were that the judges of the court who suffered attacks from the president and his Jubilee team since the historical annulling of the presidential election,were to attend the traditional event.
Committee rooms seven and nine normally reserved for the two National Assembly watchdog committees-the Public Accounts Committee and the Public Investment Committee -had been reserved and clearly marked to hold the highest judicial officers. Six parliamentary orderlies had been assigned the courtesy duty of the judges. But the judges did not show up. See this:Kuria,Muthama Arrested Over Hate Speech
Since the Supreme Court nullified the August 8 presidential election on the grounds that it was not conducted in accordance with the constitution,relations between the president and the and the judiciary have been frosty. NASA presidential candidate Raila Odinga and his running mate Kalonzo Musyoka filed a petition against his election. See Also:
Upon the nullification of his victory,the had of state accepted the court’s decision but attacked the judges calling them wakora (crooks) adding that the judges had no business overturning the “sovereign will of the people.”
Out of the seven-judge bench who heard the matter,two,Njoki Ndung’u and Jackton Ojwang’ dissented while Chief Justice David Maraga,his justice Philomena Mwilu,Justice Isaac Lenaola and Smokin Wanjala upheld the NASA petition.Justice Mohamed Ibrahim was taken ill midstream the hearing and was not part of the declaration. Justice Maraga said the court will deliver full verdit in 21 days.
Chief Justice Maraga,through his personal assistant Mundia Muchiri mantained that he was not invited to the function and added that perhaps the invite was sent to the judiciary, but none was delivered to his office, which should not be the case as the speaker is expected to send the invite to the CJ.
Cabinet Secretaries Najee Balata (Tourism), Eugene Wadalba, (Water), Fred Matiang’ (Acting Interior), Henry Rotich (Treasury), Mwangi Kiunjuri (Devolution) among others and several public service heads attended the parliamentary function. Also Read: CEO Ezra Chiloba on the Spot