There was drama on Wednesday, April 19, after a Jubilee Party gubernatorial aspirant was dealt a blow just days to the primaries, after his name was dropped from the list of contestants on academic grounds.
Nyeri Governor hopeful Thuo Mathenge, was barred from the nominations by the Jubilee Party National Elections Board (NEB) for lacking proper academic qualifications, just two days to the highly-anticipated party primaries.
Mathenge had presented a degree from a Ugandan University which raised the NEB’s eyebrows. The party concluded the degree to be ‘fraudulent’ making him ineligible in the race t be county boss.
The aspirant’s gubernatorial bid has been shrouded with doubt since last week, after the Court of Appeal on the validity of the said degree.
“The petitioner did not attend classes at Fairland University and therefore the University Degree awarded to him was not validly awarded,” Justice Wakianga had ruled.
But come Monday, April 17, Thuo who was not ready to give up the chase, wrote to the Jubilee Party national appeals tribunal in an attempt to contest the barring, accusing them of misinterpreting the findings of Justice Wakianga’s ruling.
“The National Elections Board (NEB) erred in usurping powers of the DCI and DPP which are independent and constitutionally mandated offices, thereby acting ultra vires. The NEB misinterpreted the findings of Justice Wakiaga in Election petition No. 1 of 2013, Nyeri High Court and subsequent civil appeal No. 29 of 2013 thereby arriving manifestly erroneous decision and / or findings,” A letter from Thuo to the Jubilee NEB read in part.
Apart from Mathenge, other politicians eyeing the seat formerly held by the late Nderitu Gachagua, are Samuel Wamathai who is now incumbent, Senator Mutahi Kagwe and former MP Ephraim Maina.
Thuo had already parted with the mandatory KSh 500,000 fee as he had already presented his nomination papers to the Jubilee Party.