EC can file objection in Kandep petition

The initial conflict in legal representation of the Electoral Commission in petitions is somewhat having an impact on the part of the commission in filing objections on the competency of petitions.

Since the issue was resolved early last month, the Electoral Commission has been seeking leave of the court to file that objection, challenging the competency of petitions late or out of time.

Today, the petition disputing the election of Alfred Manase, as Kandep MP went to court over the same issue.

The Electoral Commission sought leave of the court to file the late objection, challenging the competency of the petition.

The sole reason for the late filing is due to the conflicting instructions issued by the Electoral Commission and the Attorney General to two different law firms in representing the commission.

The application was opposed by lawyers for the petitioner, former Opposition MP, Don Polye, because they had 21 days to file that objection but failed to do so.

Justice Collin Makail said unlike in the past, rule 12 was imbedded into the Election Petition rules 2017 to provide a guide to coordinate parties prior to hearing.

He granted leave to the Electoral Commission to file their objection, as he was satisfied there was enough time, for the petitioner and  Manase to respond.

The matter returns to court on December 15 for status conference where a trial date will possibly be set.



Sally Pokiton