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Maraga surprises lawyers after demanding they pay Sh80 million

The money was to be used in dispensing evidence needed in the Supreme Court ruling.

The two petitioners had filed an application seeking to be given physical access to various election documents, including copies of the voter register.

IEBC and President Kenyatta’s lawyers had opposed the application insisting that the petitioners had access to the soft copies of the same documents.

However, the Supreme Court judges on Wednesday morning allowed the application, but stated that the petitioners would have to bear the cost of creating the copies.

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When the Supreme Court returned from its late lunch break, the petitioners’ lawyers, led by Harun Ndubi complained to Maraga after the IEBC gave them a bill of Sh80 million to print copies of the voter’s register.

According to the IEBC, printing the document, which was reported to have about 500,000 pages was a costly affair that would require transport and other logistic costs.

“My lord, justice is supposed to be free and easily accessible. The two petitioners cannot afford the huge bill they have been given,” Ndubi pleaded.

However, Maraga would have none of it and stated that Ndubi had been offered the soft copied but insisted on the hard copies.

“They availed the soft copy but if you insist on having the hard copies, which I understand is a costly affair, then you must pay,” Maraga stated matter-of-factly.

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Shocked by the seriousness in Maraga's tone, the petitioners later asked the Chief Justice to withdraw the order given in the morning, adding that they would make do with the soft copy register provided by the IEBC.

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