NAIROBI, Kenya Nov 16 – The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) Selection Panel has shortlisted five individuals to be interviewed for the chairman’s position ahead of next year’s General Election.
The five were picked from a list of 13 applicants – including six lawyers and a judge – who had expressed interest in the job.
Those shortlisted for interviews include Devolution expert Dr Mutakha Kangu, RoselineOdhiambo-Odede who was a member of the now defunct Judges and Magistrates Vetting Board (JMVB) and former Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commissioner (TJRC) Margaret Wambui Ngugi Shava.
Others are advocates David Kiprop Malakwen and David Mukii Mereka who will be interviewed on November 28 and 29 at County Hall.
According to the statement released by the Bernadette Musundi led panel, Mereka will be first to be interviewed at 10am. He will then be followed by Odhiambo-Odede at noon and Kangu will be final candidate for the first day.
Shava will open the interview session for the second day at 10am and will be followed thereafter by Malakwen at noon.
High Court Judge Anyara Emukule and Murshid Abdalla Mohamed who were interviewed for the post in 2011 are among the high profile names who have been locked out.
Section 6 of the IEBC Act provides that the chairperson of the Commission shall be a person who is qualified to hold the office of judge of the Supreme Court under the Constitution.
The Chairperson and the Commissioners shall be appointed for a single term of six years and shall not be eligible for reappointment and they shall serve on a full-time basis.
The panel is still sifting through the over 700 applicants that were tendered for the positions of commissioners.
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IEBC Director for Voter Registration and Electoral Operations Immaculate Kassait, Transparency International-Kenya (TI-K) Executive Director Samuel Kimeu, former Independent Policing Oversight Authority (IPOA) Board member Tom Kagwe, radio journalist and Kajiado County Government Media Relations Officer Lilian Lelei, journalist turned lawyer Soyinka Lempaa, and Human Right Activist Cyprian Nyamwamu are among applicants for the post of commissioners.
Others include Commissioner of Insurance Sammy Makove, former Industrialisation Principal Secretary Wilson Songa, former Devolution Secretary Ambassador Phillip Owade, Kenya’s former Ambassador to Russia Paul Kibiwott Kurgat, former Permanent Representative of Kenya to the United Nations Office in Geneva and the World Trade Organization Ambassador John O. Kakonga, Chairman, National Council of Churches of Kenya (NCCK) Program Committee Rev Dr Julius Karanja and former National Anti-Corruption Steering Committee Director Polycarp Omolo Ochilo, defunct Commission for the Implementation of the Constitution Commissioner Philemon Mwaisaka.
Musundi said that they will publish the names of the shortlisted candidates in the Kenya Gazette, two newspapers of national circulation and the Parliamentary Service Commission website once they have completed scrutiny of the applications.
The Section 6 (2) of the IEBC Act states that a person is qualified for appointment as a Commissioner if such person is a citizen of Kenya; holds a degree from a recognised university; has proven relevant experience in any of the following fields: electoral matters, management, finance, governance, public administration law and meets the requirements of Chapter Six of the Constitution.