- Daily NationCourtesy
The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) on Sunday, June 19 cleared UDA candidate Johnson Sakaja to vie for the Nairobi Gubernatorial seat in the August 9, election.
The IEBC Disputes Tribunal dismissed a petition that had challenged Sakaja's academic qualifications - particularly on the degree requirement.
The tribunal ruled that the IEBC was not mandated to investigate the authenticity of candidates' academic documents and that such investigations should be left to the courts and the criminal investigative agencies.Nairobi Senator Johnson Sakaja listens keenly at a past event.The Standard
"The returning officer and his agents are not legally empowered and thus lack requisite jurisdiction to go beyond the provisions of Regulation 47 of the Elections General Regulation (2012) in authenticating a degree certificate.
"The Second respondent has no jurisdiction to investigate or otherwise ascertain the authenticity of academic certificates presented to it by political party aspirants beyond the Regulation 47. Our final order is this complaint be hereby dismissed with no cost," the Tribunal noted.
Questions on the authenticity of Sakaja's academic qualifications had attracted national attention, drawing opinions from both sides of the divide.
His allies in the Kenya Kwanza regime had cited a political witch hunt from their rivals, the Azimio la Umoja coalition. Sakaja accused President Uhuru Kenyatta of allegedly using state machinery to frustrate his bid.
However, the Azimio la Umoja team advocated for Sakaja to provide his academic qualifications in order to vindicate himself.
Sakaja, who initially claimed to have graduated with a Bachelor of Actuarial Science from the University of Nairobi (UoN) later presented papers from Teams University, Kampala in Uganda.
This was after UoN affirmed that the senator was yet to graduate despite joining the university in 2003. His woes continued after the Commission for Education revoked the recognition of his Ugandan degree in order to prove its authenticity.
Among the items that CUE sought Sakaja to provide to prove his credibility included a letter of admission from the university, evidence of registration such as student ID, course units taken, examinations schedule, transcripts, graduation booklet, and receipts for application fees among others.
The senator is expected to present himself at CUE offices on Monday, June 20, with the requisite evidence.Absa Bank Kenya Ltd Chief Operating Officer James Njoroge Muchiri (left) and Nairobi Senator Johnson Sakaja.Johnson Sakajacriminal
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