NAIROBI, Kenya, May 2 – As the much awaited August 8 elections beckon, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has released a step-by-step guide to be followed by aspirants for various seats who wish to run as independent candidates.
According to the guide published by IEBC Tuesday, candidates are required to first seek clearance from the Office of the Registrar of Political Parties (ORPP) to verify that they are not registered members of any political party and the symbols they wish to use do not resemble those of any political party.
If cleared by the ORPP, the candidate will then be issued with a form of intention to contest as an independent and one for submission of a symbol.
The aspirant is then required to submit his/her symbol both in hard and soft copy by May 8 which will be checked by the IEBC to ensure it does not resemble that of another independent candidate.
The approval of the symbols by the Commission is expected to be done by May 10.
Successful candidates will then be gazetted on May 13 by the electoral commission, paving way for collection of forms from respective Returning Officers by the candidates for proposes of collecting signatures of supporters endorsing them to vie.
In order to facilitate smooth clearance, IEBC Chairperson Wafula said candidates who wish to be cleared should submit their names by Thursday, May 4.
According to sections 32 and 33 of the Elections Act of 2011, “persons intending to contest an election as independent candidates shall submit their names and the symbol to the Commission for approval.”
The Act further states that an aspirant shall not be a member of any registered party at least three months to the General Election.