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Kenya Electoral Body to Register Legislators Thursday

  • Peter Clottey

FILE - Security and bodyguards of the election commission chairman stand as he delivers a statement to the media, at the National Election Center.

FILE - Security and bodyguards of the election commission chairman stand as he delivers a statement to the media, at the National Election Center.

Kenya’s Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) plans to officially register members of parliament, as well as the house and the senate Thursday following the March 4 general election.

IEBC Commissioner Ambassador Yusuf Nzibo says the electoral body is also finalizing state and county officials who have been nominated to various positions across the country.

“We have finished drawing the draft for the gazette [official registration] for members of parliament and also for both the house and senate including those elected and those who have been nominated,” said Nzibo.

“This will allow both the house and senate to elect [their] speakers,” continued Nzibo, “and we are now going to finalize nominations for the 20 representatives who have been nominated.”

Nzibo says both the IEBC and its chairman, Isaack Hassan are prepared to defend themselves at the Supreme Court following the challenge by Prime Minister Raila Odinga’s political party, the Coalition for Reform and Democracy (CORD). The party is disputing the presidential vote, citing what it says were voting irregularities and fraud.

Nzibo says the electoral group’s internal review has been hampered by the legal challenge of the presidential vote.

“We have a workshop to discuss our own internal report but, what has complicated the whole exercise is, of course, the case before the Supreme Court…and we have to defend ourselves,’ said Nzibo.

The IEBC presented its submission to the Supreme Court Tuesday, a day after Chief Justice Willy Mutunga warned the political parties not to be making comments about the election dispute.

Under Kenya’s constitution, the high court must give its judgment on the election within 14 days of the balloting.

Nzibo says it’s not clear when parliament will convene due to the election dispute.

“Now the problem is that since there is a case challenging the results, the issue is whether the outgoing president can call the national assembly [parliament] or it should have to wait until the case is determined by the Supreme Court by the third week of this month,” said Nzibo.

Nzibo says the IEBC is working closely with the country’s transitional authority to ensure a smooth transition process despite the ongoing election dispute.

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