Blow to Kenyan Parliament after death of fifth MP.

The Orange Democratic Movement MP died on Monday at the Nairobi Hospital, where he had been admitted for treatment of an undisclosed ailment.

President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga termed the death of the MP as a blow to Parliament.

Mr Lugano becomes the fifth MP to die since the 2007 General Election. He had kept a low profile following his election.

Other ODM MPs who have passed away include David Kimutai (Ainamoi), Mugabe Were (Embakasi), Kipkalya Kones (Bomet) and Lorna Laboso (Sotik).

Mr Kimutai and Mr Were were shot dead barely two months after they were elected into the House while Mr Kones and Ms Laboso died in a plane crash in Narok in June last year.

Apart from Embakasi, where PNU’s Ferdinand Waititu won the subsequent by-election, ODM retained the other seats. It now has 99 MPs.

In his message, President Kibaki said the MP was a man of remarkable integrity, vision and restraint who served the country with diligence commitment and dedication.

Prime Minister Raila Odinga termed the death as a big blow to ODM.
“He will be remembered by most of us for his contributions as an informed legislator in the august House, and his zeal as a prominent businessman,” said a statement from the PM’s office.

Ikolomani MP Bonny Khalwale visited Lugano’s rural home to condole the bereaved.
“It is unfortunate that we have lost a colleague who, although he preferred leading a quiet and private life, knew what the needs of his people were and was accessible to them whenever they needed him,” he said.

Mr Lugano’s brother said members of the family would be meeting to make funeral arrangements at the MP’s homes in Kitale and Runda in Nairobi.

Speaker Kenneth Marende is now expected to declare the seat vacant by issuing a writ to the constituency’s returning officer within two months.

The electoral commission is then expected to set a date for nominations and hold elections within 14 days after the nomination date, according to the National Assembly and Presidential Elections Act.


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