Tharaka Nithi Senator Kithure Kindiki now says impeached governors cannot run for elective office.
In a Facebook post, Kindiki says that unless the impeachment is overturned by a court of law, such governors cannot legally contest for any elective office, or be appointed to any public office in Kenya.
“If a County Governor/ Deputy County Governor or the President/ Deputy President of the Republic is impeached or otherwise removed from office on any ground related to abuse of office or other breaches of chapter 6 of the Constitution of Kenya, a person so removed is barred from contesting for or holding any State/public office for life,” he says.
Kindiki basis his explanation of Chapter Six of the Constitution of Kenya which addresses integrity issues.
“The law treats impeachment as a complete and final judicial process and the Senate in the respective cases of the officers is the trial court acting as a tribunal whose decision is final and can only be overturned by a “higher” court. Impeachment denotes a trial and is applied to members of the executive arm of Government while “removal” is the term reserved for the ejection from office of members of the legislative or judicial arms of government or of civil servants,” he says.
This comes at a time reports are emerging that the Registrar of Political Parties has approved the symbol to be used by former Kiambu governor Ferdinand Waititu to run in the Nairobi gubernatorial election, despite having been removed from office through impeachment.
“The only exception is if the impeachment is overturned by a Court of law after judicial review of the impeachment is sought within a reasonable period of time, say within 14 days or thereafter with leave of the Court,” adds Kindiki.
Kindiki said Article 75(3) of the Constitution bars a person who is removed from office for violation of the integrity provisions of Chapter Six from holding any other State or public office.
“According to Article 180(2) of the Constitution, to be eligible for election as County Governor, a person must, among other qualifications, be eligible for election as a Member of the County Assembly (MCA). Then under Art. 193(2)(g) of the Constitution, a person is disqualified from being elected a MCA if the person has been found, in accordance with any law, to have misused or abused a State office or public office, or to have contravened Chapter Six of the Constitution,” he added.
“Article 75(3) bars a person who is removed from office for violation of the integrity provisions of Chapter Six from holding any other State or public office.” he concludes.
Nairobi seat was left vacant following the impeachment of governor Mike Sonko on grounds of gross violation of the Constitution, abuse of office and Crimes Under National law.