In what may be a legal first in the history of political petitions, former Embakasi MP Ferdinand Waititu who unsuccessfully contested the Nairobi gubernatorial seat ON a TNA and lost to ODM’s Dr Evans Kidero will pay the petition cost amounting to ksh 4 million in denomination coins of ksh 5.
During the hearing, Justice Richard MwongoÂ had made a sadistic joke that the petition loser will pay ‘in full an amount of ksh 4.2 million’ Â in any legal tender he deems fit, much to the chagrin of the Hon Waititu, whom, until the judgement, believed that the election of Gov Kidero will be quashed in his favour. However, hours to the ruling, he was informed that he had lost the case after which he attempted frantically to postpone the ruling but justice Mwongo could hear none of it.
â€œThe tyranny of time in election disputes provides that we must complete the cases by September 13, which leaves us with only two and half months for hearing, submissions and judgment,â€ the judge had ruled then.
Grudgingly and with no other option, Hon Waititu accepted the ruling, with its costs, and (as a journalist friend of mine put it) ‘smiled away’. Apparently, the resilient street politician had got a new idea to send some point home.
“I have decided to fulfil the last aspect of the petition in legal tender sh Â 5 (coins) and so hired 8 lorries to deliver the money to him (Dr Kidero),” said Waititu in a press conference at his Wakulima House offices in Nairobi.
Reacting to the news, the Governor of Central Bank, Prof Njuguna Ndung’u, said the bank had received a request of such an amount of money last week but had not acted upon it.
Sensing delay within the bureaucracy, Waititu then approached Equity Bank with the exchange request to which the bank, the largest in East and Central Africa, agreed to. It was not yet clear at what amount the coins will be exchanged as we were informed when we called the bank that the CEO, Dr James Mwangi, was held up after which we hung up.
Aides of Gov Kidero should now prepare to count the money, calculated to be in ‘gigantic proportions’. The money is to be delivered to a safe house in undisclosed location in Nairobi after which the Governor will have to shop for a bank to accept the mountainous million.
Read with a pinch of salt.
Additional reportage by Boi Woi who lives along Mombasa Road.