CORD says deal on IEBC dialogue team reached

CORD says deal on IEBC dialogue team reached

The Coalition for Reforms and Democracy (CORD) says it has agreed with Jubilee to table a motion in Senate and National Assembly to establish a joint committee to steer the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) reforms.

According to Siaya Senator James Orengo, the motion will be presented to the two Houses and a Joint Select Committee established.

Orengo said that the team will focus on recommending legal policy and institutional reforms for presentation to Parliament.

CORD will be represented by Senators Johnson Muthama (Machakos), Mutula Kilonzo (Makueni) and James Orengo (Siaya), MPs Eseli Simiyu (Tongaren) , Junet Mohamed (Suna East) and Hellen Sambili (Mogotio) and Mombasa Women Representative Mishi Mboko.

The committee is set to begin work immediately the motion is passed.

CORD had on Monday announced an indefinite suspension of all protests against IEBC in a move reportedly necessitated by the significant progress made in ironing out the issues that had impeded the formation of a dialogue team.

While the coalition had agreed on several key issues, there was still a disagreement over the action to be taken against IEBC commissioners implicated in misconduct at the misconduct

CORD had held five protests in the course of six weeks to protest against the electoral agency calling for their removal from office over apparent ineptitude to hold free and fair elections in 2017.

The coalition leaders Raila Odinga has claimed that IEBC is working with Jubilee to rig the incumbent President Uhuru Kenyatta back to power in the next polls, allegations that have been rubbished by the agency chair Issack Hassan.

The president has also refuted CORD’s claims saying he does not care who takes charge of the commission since it is Kenyans who vote.

After a meeting with religious leaders and speakers of the National Assembly and the Senate at State House, President Kenyatta agreed to form a committee that would meet CORD representatives to iron out the outstanding issues touching on IEBC.

The move prompted CORD to soften their stand and agree to Jubilee’s proposal though raising concerns with a number of issues including the inclusion of the Speakers in the process, the high number of Jubilee representatives and the need for leaders from the two political groups to sign the agreement reached.

The issues have since been rectified with both parties agreeing to exclude the speakers from the process, reduce the number of representatives to just seven each, and allow the recommendations to be forwarded directly to Parliament for ‘rubber stamping’.

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Story By Sam Ogina
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