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Activists sue Uhuru, say new Cabinet unconstitutional

A group of activists have gone to court seeking to have President Uhuru Kenyatta’s new Cabinet declared unconstitutional.

They are seeking to have it declared unlawful for not adhering to the two-third gender rule.

Ms Marilyn Muthoni Kamuru, Ms Daisy Doreen Jerop Amdany and Centre for Rights Education and Awareness (Creaw) are seeking a declaration that President Kenyatta’s Cabinet selection was done in contravention of the rule of law and good governance.

The Attorney-General, Secretary to the Cabinet and National Assembly are listed as first, second and third respondents.

NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

The petitioners are further seeking a declaration that the National Assembly approved the Cabinet nominees in an unconstitutional way.

“A declaration that the nomination by the President and approval by the National Assembly of persons for the Cabinet Secretaries’ positions was done in contravention of the principal of rule of law and good governance in total disregard of Article 27 on equality and equal opportunities including the requirement that an appointive body should not have more than two-thirds of persons of the same gender,” reads a court document filed the group.

They are also seeking an order that any Cabinet directives or those made by individual Cabinet secretaries declared a nullity in law and of no legal effect.

SALARIES

They want the secretary to the Cabinet be barred from paying salaries, benefits or emoluments to the Cabinet secretaries and that he or his agents or any public servants barred from undertaking any Cabinet directive or communicate to other State agencies.

Among the prayers that they are seeking include that President Kenyatta be found to have violated Justice Joseph Onguto’s orders in 2016  that his new Cabinet after the August 8 election should meet the two-third gender rule constitutional requirement.

JUSTICE ONGUTO RULING

They also asking the High Court to find that Mr Kenyatta failed to constitute a fresh Cabinet in adherence to Justice Onguto’s order and that the National Assembly approved unconstitutional Cabinet nominees.

They also want the court to declare that Justice Kihara Kariuki’s nomination to the Attorney-General’s position was unconstitutional and in contravention of the principle of rule of law and good governance.

In December 2016, Justice Onguto declared that President Uhuru Kenyatta flouted the gender rule principle in the appointment of Cabinet secretaries but suspended his verdict for eight months to avert plunging the country into a crisis.

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