NAIROBI, Kenya, May 28 – The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has cleared ODM Candidate Raila Odinga to run for the position of President in the August General Election.
Chairman of the Commission Wafula Chebukati stated that Raila had satisfied all the requirements needed of him.
The electoral body also cleared his running mate Kalonzo Musyoka after verifying all his documents.
“Having reviewed documents presented before me by Raila Amolo Odinga and his running mate Stephen Kalonzo Musyoka, I am satisfied that they have met the qualifications to run for the position of President of the Republic of Kenya,” Chebukati stated.
Chebukati said that the duo is now free to conduct campaigns across the county.
“I also want to say that as you go out there you can campaign anywhere in the country, all over the country, but as you do so please campaign peacefully,” he stated.
“As a Commission we are very concerned that issues of hate speech do not come out. You have signed the code of conduct both as your respective political parties and candidates.”
And to which Raila responded that he hoped Francis Ole Kaparo and his team at the National Cohesion and Integration Commission would be careful to differentiate between what qualified as hate speech and what falls under “fair reply.”
“We do not expect their power to be abused and used as a mechanism to gag the opposition.” Raila said as Kalonzo in turn demanded of the IEBC that they commit to conducting a free and fair election exercise.
“They’ve asked us to commit to peaceful campaigns and they should have also committed to the conduct of a free and fair exercise.”
Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero who is in charge of NASA’s city campaign team, described the clearance as a major step to having Raila sworn in as President in August.
Other members of the team include lawyer Edwin Sifuna, who is vying for Nairobi Senate seat, Makadara MP aspirant George Aladwa and Woman Representative aspirant Esther Passaris.
After clearance, Raila was expected to join the NASA team for a tour across four constituencies before holding a rally at Jacaranda Grounds in Embakasi.