Moses Wetangula, the leader of the Ford-Kenya party, was named speaker after Kenneth Marende, who was running for Azimio la Umoja, dropped out of the second round of the race.
The former Bungoma Senator won the close election with 215 votes against Marende’s 130. There was a single invalid ballot, bringing the final tally to 346.
More than two-thirds of the votes cast, or more than 230, were needed for him to win. Wetangula takes over for Justin Muturi, who was elected in March 2013. He is an experienced politician who started out as a magistrate.
Serah Kioko, who is the acting clerk for the National Assembly, says that only two of the twenty-one people who turned in nomination papers were accepted.
David Mwaure Waihiga, the leader of the Agano party and a past presidential contender, was one of those who fell short. Others who tried but failed to make the cut included Gideon Kiplangat Cheruiyot, Daniel Wanyonyi Opilo, Dorothy Kemunto Nyagori, Kevin Nyamari, and others.
The Azimio MPs, led by Ruaraka lawmaker TJ Kajwang, argued that the former Senator did not follow due process, so Ms. Kioko had to rule on his candidacy before the vote.
The Azimio MPs, led by Ruaraka politician TJ Kajwang, contended that the former Senator did not follow the proper process, and thus Ms. Kioko had to rule on his candidacy before the vote.
“The Speaker to which he delivered his resignation letter (as Senator) was already a governor… Wetangula is not eligible to become a Speaker,” argued Kajwang.
“What TJ Kajawang is purporting can only be described as opaque,” charged Ichungwah.
“Moses Wetangula ceased to be the Senator of Bungoma on the 9th of August… before he submitted his resignation, Wetangula has been a senator-elect and therefore not a state officer,” Duale explained.
Kioko said that the MPs could vote because the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) had cleared Wetangula.
“I am in receipt of a letter dated August 29 from Moses Wetangula in which he communicated to the Speaker of Senate his decision to resign as Senator-elect of Bungoma. I have satisfied myself that Moses Wetangula is qualified to vie as Speaker of the National Assembly,” she explained.