Uhuru & Raila lose first round of BBI appeal

Uhuru's request to suspend the BBI ruling has been thrown out.

President Uhuru Kenyatta with AU envoy Raila Odinga

President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga have suffered a blow in court after the Judiciary moved to form a 7-judge bench to hear the appeal against the nullification of the Building Bridges Initiative Constitutional Amendment 2020.

Delivering the ruling on Wednesday, June 2, the three-judge bench rejected a request by the duo to suspend the initial ruling.

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) was allowed to continue discharging their functions except the referendum.

The judges also announced that the BBI appeal would be heard for four days from June 29, 2021 to July 2, 2021.

“IEBC shall continue to discharge its statutory & administrative functions save for dealing with any of the contentious issues arising from the High court judgement relating to the Constitution of Kenya amendment bill,” Judge Daniel Musinga said.

This means that the referendum which the BBI proponents had scheduled for June, stands suspended until the appeal is heard and determined.

Justice Musinga who was elected Court of Appeal President to take over from Justice William Ouko will pick the names of the seven judges tasked with the matter.

The court was also made aware of President’s Kenyatta’s remarks during the Madaraka Day celebrations where he criticised that the Judiciary has tested the limits of Kenya’s constitution.

“The president made remarks that would be concerning to other litigants before this court, we seek permission to bring those remarks that are in contempt of court before you,” one of the counsels told the court.

All appellants are expected to file their respective submissions within 7 days of the date hereof (June 2).

The president had expressed hope that they would win the appeal, citing the expertise of constitutional lawyer and Siaya Senator James Orengo.

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