, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 29 – A Kenyan seeking the removal of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) Commissioners from office has told MPs that the poll agency and Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) ignored his warning on the mismanagement of the procurement and handling of the electoral management system.
Barasa Nyukuri who is also a consultant and has worked with the IEBC and its predecessors, the Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC) and the Electoral Commission of Kenya (ECK) as a trainer told the joint sitting of the Justice and Legal Affairs Committee (JLAC) and that of the Constitutional Implementation Oversight Committee (CIOC) that he had raised issues around the operations of poll body in 2011 and 2014 but they were ignored.
“I went and reported the selection process and hiring process to the EACC but they never acted. What do I do as Barasa?” he posed.
“Even the Chickengate you could not have seen it – I just want to be very sincere – I was the first person to raise eyebrows on the Chickengate but I have a report that I took to the EACC before October 2011, and even if EACC are to be honest with themselves they should be able to produce a copy of that report. I warned about the appointments, about the hiring and about the procurements but nobody wanted to listen,” Nyukuri told the committee.
He said he was elated to have been invited to give evidence against the poll agency on his birthday, and stated that he had resolved to file a petition at the National Assembly since it is the constitutional way to institute the removal of IEBC Commissioners.
“My conscience in the Constitution is very clear, so I should not be condemned that for having brought the petition at this time, because at one time I was told off that the politicians – CORD and Jubilee – are agreeing so why do you want to waste time,” he told the joint House Committee.
“I want to warn, that the process that is outside now this, will take an even longer time than my petition. If you were to now do the reforms through a law you need 90 days for public participation because some of the areas will require constitutional amendments, you will take any shortcuts if you take any shortcuts we will take you to court.”
He said that IEBC is grossly incompetent and cannot be entrusted to hold a free and fair election in 2017.
The Bungoma resident is seeking the removal from office of Commissioners at the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission on grounds of incompetence and lack of integrity.
The committee will on Thursday meet with Auditor-General Edward Ouko after Nyukuri cited as part of his supporting evidence that he has relied on the Special Auditor’s Report on the mismanagement and financial impropriety at the IEBC.
IEBC Chairman Issack Hassan, Vice-Chairperson Lilian Mahiri-Zaja, and Commissioners Yusuf Nzibo, Albert Bwire, Kule Godana, Abdullahi Sharawe, Thomas Letangule, Muthoni Wangai, Mohamed Alawi and Commission Secretary/CEO Ezra Chiloba, will appear before the House committee next week to respond the allegations which have been levelled against them.
The Justice and Legal Affairs Chairman Samuel Chepkonga (Ainabkoi) said that committee will be applying for an extension of time to deal comprehensively with the petition.
The committee has 14 days within which to submit a report to the House as required under paragraph (4) of Standing Order 230.
Once the committee tables its report, the House will have 10 days to decide whether or not the petition contains valid grounds for removal of the commissioners.