World News

Kenya electoral board commissioners resign over leadership fight

Kenya electoral board commissioners resign over leadership fight

Speaking to journalists Monday in Nairobi, Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission official Margaret Mwachanya said the head of the electoral body has failed.

Chebukati said he had learned of the resignations through the media, and would comment later.

The latest resignation of three IEBC commissioners over alleged poor leadership of Chairman Wafula Chebukati did not come as a coincidence, a source privy to IEBC intrigues has revealed.

In a joint press briefing at a Nairobi hotel on Monday morning, IEBC Vice Chair Consolata Nkatha Maina, Commissioners Margaret Mwachanya and Paul Kurgat said that external interference has encroached the commission's independence under Chebukati's leadership. "All that we need is a strengthened and robust secretariat", he said adding that the number of commissioners in other independent commissions should also be trimmed to five. It is either Chiloba is reinstated or the entire commission goes down.

Mwachanya blames politicians for the commission's woes.

More news: May faces backlash over treatment of 'Windrush generation' of migrants

The commissioners past year refused to step down amid opposition calls on them to resign, followed by protests to force their resignation, leading to scores of deaths.

Chiloba was handed a three-month suspension by IEBC Chairman Wafula Chebukati to allow audit of the 2017 election financial processes. By law, the commission must have four active members to carry out business. The commission was frequently at the centre of controversy during Kenya's extended election season a year ago, in which around 100 people were killed.

Last September, Kenya's Supreme Court annulled the August 8 presidential reelection of Uhuru Kenyatta and ordered a do-over. "The question would be who stands to benefit in a situation where that audit is not conducted?"

President Uhuru Kenyatta won a repeat vote in October that opposition leader Raila Odinga boycotted.

The resignation of the three leaves the commission technically dysfunctional with only Chebukati, and Commissioners Boya Molu and Abdi Guliye remaining put.


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