Embakasi East Member of Parliament Paul Ongili alias Babu Owino will know whether he will lose his seat or not on Wednesday next week, when the High Court is expected to deliver a ruling on whether to quash the newly elected MP's response to a case challenging his August 8th victory.
Francis Mureithi, who contested for the seat on a Jubilee ticket and filed a petition challenging Owino’s win, said the respondent violated the law for filing a response to his after 12 days instead of required seven after the petition was lodged.
Through his lawyer Ham Lang’at, Mureithi says that the former Students Organization of Nairobi University (SONU) chairman failed to provided a substantive reason as to why he filed his response outside the required timeline.
In an affidavit, Babu said that the petition by Muriithi was served through a publication in a local newspaper, which he learnt of it later and thats why his response was delayed, an argument the petitioner has dismissed as ‘unreasonable’.
“The respondent is responsible for own delay. It is negligence for an MP to allege he didn’t see an advert in a widely circulated daily,” said Langat.
Babu’s lawyers Jackson Awele and Edwin Sifuna said that their delayed response should even be commended as they were not officially served with the petition.
“It’s our submission that the late filing can’t prejudice the petition as our action is reasonable and have strong basis,” submitted Counsel Jackson Awele.