Kenyan Opposition MPs, Supreme Court Judges Boycott Uhuru Kenyatta’s Speech
Opposition MPs in Kenya yesterday boycotted the opening of the new parliament to protest against President Uhuru Kenyatta’s decision to address it after a court annulled his election win.
They said that parliament should not have been convened until after the election re-run slated for 17 October.
The MPs instead joined opposition leader Raila Odinga for a campaign rally in the capital, Nairobi.
Kenyatta said he still had the power to convene parliament.
“The set term of a president is embedded until a new one is sworn in as per the constitution,” he told lawmakers.
“I want to assure every Kenyan and the world that every arm of government is in place and operational,” he added.
Kenyatta was declared winner of the 8 August poll, garnering 54% of the vote against Odinga’s 44%.
Kenyatta had dared opposition MPs to skip the opening of parliament saying that his Jubilee Party had enough MPs to carry on with parliament’s activities.
Only one MP from the opposition was present, according to Kenya’s privately-owned Star newspaper.
The Standard publication reports that Supreme Court judges, who traditionally attend the official opening of parliament, were absent.
Chief Justice David Maraga’s office however told the BBC that the judges had not been invited.