Kenya referendum rivals to sign code

June 7, 2010 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 7- The Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC) now says all campaign committees on the proposed Constitution within the ‘No’ and ‘Yes’ camps will be bound by a code of conduct as they register themselves ahead of the forthcoming referendum.

IIEC Chairman Isaack Hassan on Monday said the committees would take full responsibility for any breach of the laid down rules by their supporters and would therefore have to ensure that those in their teams followed the laws.

The Commission which also said it would announce the official number of registered voters on Tuesday, further expressed concerns with the manner in which campaigns for the South Mugirango by-elections were being carried out.

“We are very disappointed with the reported incidents of violence. That is something which we cannot tolerate and cannot be tolerated by Kenyans.  People should be able to exercise their democratic right to vote without any form of intimidation or violence,” said Mr Hassan.

He added that the IIEC had started looking into the root cause of the violence in South Mugirango and that those found guilty would face the law.

“We are doing our own internal investigations and we will take whatever action we deem necessary. The applicable law is the National Assembly and Presidential Elections Act Cap 7 under the laws of Kenya and also the Political Parties Act,” he explained.

The IECC Chairman also added that the commission would also probe protests it had received from the Orange Democratic Movement regarding the ongoing by-election campaigns.

“We have also received complaints from the ODM Party against PNU for supporting the PDP candidate and we are also addressing that matter. But overall I think the environment has been conducive for us to conduct the by-elections,” said Mr Hassan.

The South Mugirango by-election is scheduled for this Thursday.

The seat fell vacant after the High Court in Kisii nullified the election of immediate former MP Omingo Magara citing irregularities. The petition was filed by Manson Nyamweya who vied for the seat in the 2007 general election on a Ford People ticket. 

Mr Magara is now re-contesting the post on a PDP ticket with the support of PNU and ODM-K. There are 10 other aspirants competing for the seat among them ODM’s Ibrahim Ochoi Progressive Party of Kenya’s Rashid Miyong’a and KANU’s Joshua Ondora.

Meanwhile the Matuga by-election and that of 25 other vacant civic seats are scheduled for July 12 this year.


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