Court to rule on IEBC top officials role in poll by next week

IEBC Chief Executive Officer Ezra Chiloba. Photo/FILE
IEBC Chief Executive Officer Ezra Chiloba. Photo/FILE

Top officials of the electoral commission will in the next one week know whether they will conduct the fresh presidential election or not.

This is after High Court judge, John Mativo,  on Tuesday heard submissions from parties in a case where three voters are seeking to stop the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) chief executive officer, Ezra Chiloba, and other Commissioners from overseeing the repeat election set for October 26.

Brian Asin, Ben Wanasakaami and Kevin Alwang’a argue that the integrity of the accused IEBC officials is in question since they failed to conduct the August election in accordance with the Constitution. Hence, they should be barred from conducting the fresh presidential election.

However, through Lawyer Wambua Kilonzo, the electoral commission asked the court to dismiss the case saying that the court has no jurisdiction to hear and determine the case.

“This petition must fail on the basis of jurisdiction. The petitioners are in the wrong court,” IEBC submitted.

Lawyer Kionzo told the court that if the commissioners and its Chairman, Wafula Chebukati, are removed from office the conduct of the repeat presidential election will be impractical.

The Commission argued that the powers of the court can be invoked when the petition has been filed with Parliament and a tribunal appointed by the president to investigate the commissioners.

“As it is now, there’s no complaint nor a tribunal. This case is premature,” the court heard.

Lawyer Evans Monari, while arguing for the IEBC, said that the Commission must be allowed to do its work without fear.

“If you will grant orders sought by the petitioners then you will have taken the powers of the tribunal, executive and parliament,” Monari said.

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Story By Dzuya Walter
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