The ruling on the petition challenging the re-election of Busia Governor Sospeter Ojaamong will be delivered on February 5, 2018. Busia trial Judge Kiarie Waweru Kiarie fixed the judgment date on Tuesday after Ojaamong, who was the third respondent in the case, lined up six witnesses including himself.
The decision was arrived at after the Governor and four others testified in the morning with the sixth witness who is a prominent Busia businessman Charles Wesonga, the proprietor of Hotel Itoya being the last to testify on Tuesday afternoon.
It was agreed that the petitioner Peter Odima’s lawyers ( David Ochieng and Daniel Achachi) will file and serve their submissions by January 19, 2018, while the respondents will file theirs on January 25 and highlight the same on the same day.
The Judge in his closing remarks told politicians to cultivate the culture of accepting verdicts and forge ahead, adding that winning and losing is part of the game.
“Elections are not a matter of life and death. Life must continue irrespective of the outcome of the petition or the polls,” he said.
The Judge will also deliver judgments on cases challenging the election of Budalangi MP Raphael Wanjala on January 30th and that of Teso South MP Geoffrey Omuse on January 31st.
IEBC was represented by Chrysostom Akhaabi and Ojaamong by Otiende Amollo, Stephen Ligunya, Joseph Makokha and Vitalis Juma.
The petitioner called a total of 18 witnesses. The first and second respondents lined up three with the Governor who is the third respondent parading six. Amollo said they found it not necessary to call any other witness.
Former Funyula MP Dr Paul Otuoma had suffered a setback when the video evidence he had annexed to his affidavit implicating Busia Governor Sospeter Ojaamong was expunged from the records.
Also expunged from the court records were affidavits of 43 witnesses whom the petitioner Peter Odima had listed but were not called to testify.
The first and second respondents suffered a similar fate when 14 witnesses who were not called to testify were also expunged. Ojaamong had set to call 21 witnesses but they trimmed it to six meaning that evidence of 15 witnesses will also be expunged.