, NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 21 – President Uhuru Kenyatta on Friday warned against intimidation of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) ahead of the Thursday repeat presidential election.
Speaking during the Mashujaa day celebrations, a tough-talking head of state called on all leaders to exercise restraint, noting the need to nurture and trust Kenya’s independent institutions to deliver for all Kenyans.
“To those threatening and intimidating the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), its staff and other entities, this must cease forthwith. We must trust, nurture and safeguard our institutions to enable them to grow and perform their functions,” said the President.
He further called on the opposition leaders who have vowed to carry what they described as the ‘mother of all protests’ on election day to strictly abide by the law.
“As a modern state, Kenya must be guided by the rule of law,” said the President who is one of the eight candidates in the repeat election in which his main competitor Raila Odinga of the National Super Alliance (NASA) has vowed to boycott, unless the electoral body institutes reforms.
Inspector General of Kenya Police Joseph Boinnet also reiterated the commitment of the service to provide security throughout the country for everyone willing to exercise their democratic right of voting for their preferred candidates.
There have been several incidents of disruptions of training for IEBC officials in Nyanza region, where Opposition leaders have vowed to ensure no elections are conducted.
“Anyone interfering or blocking IEBC officials from doing their work is committing a crime and will be dealt with accordingly,” the IG said.
Police are already looking for Kisumu Senator Fred Outa and former area Deputy Governor Ruth Odinga—accused of leading a group that disrupted one such exercise in Kisumu last week.