Kenya – (warsoor) – The Court of Appeal has awarded Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) KSh 4 billion from the political parties fund being an unpaid accumulated amount for last five years.
A majority of the three-judge bench, Justices Otieno Odek and Daniel Musinga, ruled that Parliament should pay the money backdated to November 1, 2011 until the arrears are cleared.
“The appellant is entitled in arrears to all monies due pursuant to Section 25(1)(a) of the Political Parties Act from the financial year subsequent the effective date of the Act i.e. arrears from the 2012/13 financial year,” the judges ruled.
However, on his side, Justice Erastus Githinji differed with his colleagues saying the party slept on it’s job and thus the money claimed could not be ascertained.
He said ODM should have claimed the money all along and not waiting until after five years.
“It is clear from the foregoing that the appellant and its Members of National Assembly had opportunity in each of the five financial years to make recommendation or even lobby for appropriation of sufficient funds for the Political Parties Fund. The law serves the vigilant and acquiescence may amount to a waiver of statutory rights,” said Justice Githinji.
Raila Odinga’s party launched a case in the High Court arguing they had been receiving KSh 100 million from the National Assembly for over four years from 2011 to 2016 contrary to the figure set by law.
The party moved to the Court of Appeal after the case was thrown out at the High Court by Judge Roslyne Aburili who ruled that she could not force the taxpayer to shoulder the arrears as ODM never demanded the money.
Aburili said the fund set aside from the National Treasury is not a debt and thus cannot be paid if it was not allocated by the National Assembly then.
“The party waited for four financial years to demand the money, yet it had known that Parliament had not been allocating the correct figures… It will not be in the interest of justice or public policy for the amount to be released to the party,” said Justice Aburili.
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