NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 21 – The last time they stood together to address the press, the talk was of “red lines” their former ally, Joseph Nkaissery, having accused one of their own, Hassan Joho, of crossing it and they in turn accusing him of stepping over the line.
On Monday the conversation shifted over to the “bending” of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission’s will.
The CORD brigade led by co-principals Raila Odinga and Kalonzo Musyoka accused the IEBC of “bending over” to please the ruling coalition just days after MPs allied to the Jubilee Administration accused the IEBC of doing the same in favour of CORD.
TNA Nominated MP Johnson Sakaja accused the IEBC of “falling over itself” to prove its independence to the Coalition for Reforms and Democracy and cited the Okoa Kenya referendum push as the most recent case in point.
“Whenever the Opposition raises an issue, they always run to them. When they have a case to resolve because the opposition is always hard on them, they run to them and they bend. IEBC must remember the reason it starts with a letter ‘I’. It must remain as an independent and strong referee.”
He therefore demanded that the IEBC publicly identify the over one million persons CORD says signed on in support of the OKOA Kenya referendum push.
Together with the Leader of the Majority in the National Assembly, Aden Duale, he said they had, “reliable information,” that the signatures CORD had collected in support of their referendum were, “not genuine.”
And in a rejoinder on Monday, Musyoka and Odinga questioned how Sakaja and Duale could have come across such information when the signatures they handed over for verification to the IEBC should ideally be in their sole custody.
“The statements being made by Jubilee leaders clearly indicate that Jubilee and the IEBC is one and the same thing. We will not be surprised if the IEBC bends over again to confirm Jubilee’s prophesy that the Okoa Kenya bill did not meet the threshold of signatures,” Kalonzo said.
On Monday, Odinga asked the IEBC “to do the right thing” but declared CORD “will use all constitutional, parliamentary and extra parliamentary means to stop the IEBC from corrupting the desire of the people of Kenya.”
In its effort to amend the Constitution by popular initiative, CORD submitted over one million signatures to the IEBC on November 9, 2015.
It has since accused the IEBC of violating the three month timeline the Constitution sets for their verification and subsequent forwarding of their draft amendment bill to the County Assemblies for consideration.
Through a referendum, CORD hopes to amend the law on devolution, land and elections.