Persons living with disability (PLWDs) in Baringo want a court injunction to halt the swearing-in of members of county assembly (MCAs) on September 21 citing lack of inclusivity as none of them was nominated.
Speaking to KNA at Kabarnet town, Edwin Kandie their chairperson lamented on the lack of consideration of PLWDs in the recently gazetted IEBC nominations list and urged the UDA party leadership to act speedily to avert a looming crisis.
“According to Article 177 of the constitution, membership of the county assembly should include PLWDs yet we have been left out now, same to the year 2017. Disability mainstreaming is important, we are not ready to be left out again this time, one of us should be nominated to represent our interests,” Kandie said.
Kandie said Mathew Kipyekomen and Christine Kandie were on the nominations final list but failed to appear on the gazette list adding that in 2017 they were faced with a similar challenge and they went to court late after MCAs had already been sworn-in due to lack of funds. “We had no money to hire an advocate which led to our case being dismissed,” he argued.
According to Gladys Chepyego, they were very disappointed as the process was not fair since none of them made it to the final list despite over 15 of them having applied to be considered.
“We have so many PLWDs all over the county and yet two made it to the final list but after the gazette notice came out, we were shocked to find out that not even one was given the opportunity yet we want to be equally represented at the county assembly,” Chepyego lamented.
Chepyego asked President William Ruto to finish the cartels as he had promised during his maiden speech claiming they were using their resources to depress the disadvantaged PLWDs in society yet the minority group has so many challenges that it needs representation from one of their own at the county assembly.
Micheal Tamam, the Chairman Baringo Paralympic organisation noted that the 2010 Constitution gave equal rights to youths, women and PLWDs to get representation yet it came as a shock that none of them was picked claiming that some of the nominated persons were benefitting for a second time.
“We want a court injunction to stop swearing-in of the elected MCAs until the stalemate is resolved and it is a shame that just because PLWDs lack funds to campaign hence miss out on the nomination slots,” Tamam said.
He likewise urged UDA top leadership to intervene and welcomed any advocate willing to offer them pro bono services in court to contact them citing lack of funds to meet legal expenses.
The recent IEBC gazette notice saw the county get 15 nomination slots with UDA party amassing 11 slots.
By Caroline Cherono