'The sixty days within which the commission is supposed to hold a byelection expired on July 9'
BUSIA- The electoral commission (EC) has said it is too early to blame it for not conducting the Busia district LC 5 bye election noting that time for holding the exercise is still on.
"The time within which the bye election can be organised has not yet expired," reads in part a letter signed by the acting electoral commission chairperson Hajati Aisha Lubega Basajanaku.
The letter dated third of August was addressed to Deogratious Hasubi Njoki a former candidate in the 2016 Busia district LC 5, copied to the Busia district chief administrative officer and the area district returning officer.
This was in response to a petition filed by Njoki as an interested party seeking for information from the EC about the programme for conducting the Busia district chairperson's bye election.
The letter further indicate that when the appropriate time comes the EC will accordingly have all the stakeholders informed all the concerned parties of its programme.
Quoting the local government Act CAP 243 section 171 (a) on bye election provide s that where the office of district chairperson becomes vacant, the clerk to council shall notify the commission within twenty one days and the commission will hold bye election within sixty days from the commitancy of the vacancy except that in the case of district chairperson the commission shall organise bye election within sixty days.
Njoki, therefore, urged that the sixty days within which the commission is supposed to hold a byelection expired on July 9.
He was referring to election Apeal number 51/2016 determined on May 10, 2018, by the Court of Appeal upheld the decision of Mbale High Court of June 14, 2016 which disqualified Ouma Adea from the office of LC5 and ordered the electoral commission to hold bye election.
Hajati Aisha Lubega Basajanaku acknowledged having received notification from the Busia district chief administrative officer of the need to hold bye election.
But referring to section 171 (1) of the local government Act, Lubega said the Busia district chief administrative officer had notified the election commission of the vacant position of the district chairperson and need to organise a bye election.
Using the law she said the Commission will organise bye election within six months from the occurance of the vacancy which time she noted has not yet elapsed.