Home » Blow to MP aspirants as IEBC demands degree certificate

Blow to MP aspirants as IEBC demands degree certificate

by Amos Khaemba

Independent Boundaries and Electoral Commission (IEBC) has dealt a blow to parliamentary aspirants as it insists that candidates vying for the position must have a degree certificate.

While responding to an inquiry by United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party Secretary General Veronica Maina, IEBC through its CEO Marjan Hussein said the law requiring MPs to have degrees was still in force.

“Section 22 of the Elections Act, 2011 speaks to the requirement of Members of Parliament and Members of the County Assembly to possess a degree from a university recognized in Kenya. This law is in force for purposes of the General Election 2022,” said Marjan

IEBC further gave a reprieve to MCA aspirants saying that the High Court in a judgment on constitutional petition No. E229 of 2021 on October 2021 declared section 22(1)(6)(i) of the Elections Act unconstitutional.

“For clarity, the court effectively nullified the requirement that a person must possess a degree from a university recognized in Kenya to qualify to be a Member of a County Assembly,” Marjan added.

Marjan further revealed that there is an ongoing case before the High Court changing the Constitutionality of the section on degree requirement of the Elections Act.

“Unless declared unconstitutional by the Court, the degree requirement for Members of Parliament is in force and is trite law,” Marjan said.

According to the Chebukati led commission,  the aspirants who must have a degree certificate are those vying for the positions of the President, Deputy President, Governors, and Deputy Governors.

The UDA secretary general had written to the electoral body requesting for information on qualifications and requirements for candidates across all elective positions ahead of the August 9 General Elections.

The law which has been postponed from 2013 General election has sent chills spine of lawmakers who do not degrees.

According to parliamentary records, more than 40 legislatures fall short of the requirement meaning they will not be cleared to defend their seats.

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