Presidential poll to be conducted afresh on Oct 17, contest between Uhuru, Raila

September 4, 2017 6:58 pm
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Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta was declared the August 8 poll winner with 54.27 percent to 44.74 for challenger Raila Odinga © AFP / TONY KARUMBA, SIMON MAINA

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 4 – A fresh presidential poll following the nullification of the last one by the Supreme Court, will be held on October 17.

On Monday the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission also announced that only President Uhuru Kenyatta and Opposition leader Raila Odinga would be on the ballot.

“There shall be no fresh nominations in the envisaged fresh election. In the fresh election, the petitioners before the Supreme Court, Raila Odinga and his running mate Kalonzo Muyoka and the 3rd respondent Uhuru Kenyatta and his running mate William Samoei Ruto, shall be the only candidates.”

When making the announcement, IEBC Chairperson Wafula Chebukati reiterated that the Commission was making changes to ensure that the election is conducted within the strictest confines of the law given the Supreme Court annulled the August 8 exercise on account of irregularities and illegalities.

“The Commission is revising the procedural and operational requirements for the conduct of the fresh election and will share details with stakeholders sooner than later.”

He did however, again, seek to impress on the Supreme Court the necessity of detailing their reasons for invalidating the August 8 exercise to enable the Commission better prepare for October 17.

“In light of the Supreme Court judgement, it is imperative that a detailed judgement in the just concluded petition is released in order to allow the Commission to identify areas that require improvement in the management of the fresh election.”

He however made no mention of the personnel changes he said would also be taking place in response to the Supreme Court’s damning verdict of its conduct of the August 8 presidential election.

He did on Friday, in the wake of the Supreme Court judgement, also invite the Director of Public Prosecutions to investigate its staff for the failures on which four of six judges based their invalidation of the election.

“It is worth noting that the new Commissioners only took office seven months ago, without any changes made to the Secretariat. To protect the integrity of the sovereign will of the Kenyan people, the Commission intends to make internal changes to our personnel and processes as we prepare for the fresh presidential election in sixty days,” Chebukati said on Friday.

The announcement that only President Kenyatta and Odinga would be on the ballot, was not met kindly in some quarters including by Ekuru Aukot who also contested the presidency. “Decision by @IEBCKenya to lock other presidential candidates out of #FreshElections is INVALID ILLEGAL, NULL & VOID We Are headed to Court (sic),” he tweeted.

Earlier on Monday, Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiangi had pleaded with the IEBC to schedule the election before October 17 so as not to interfere with the national exam calendar.

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