New election date’s a birthday gift for Uhuru: Raila


New election date’s a birthday gift for Uhuru: Raila

The National Super Alliance (NASA) presidential candidate Raila Odinga now says the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) did not consult his team, when the electoral board was setting October 26 as the date for a fresh presidential election.

Mr Odinga says the NASA formation will only take part in the fresh vote, when its demands are met by the electoral body.

The Opposition chief further stated that the IEBC, in collusion with French technology firm OT-Morpho, settled on October 26 as a date for rematch between him and President Uhuru Kenyatta so as to give the President a “gift” for his 56th birthday.

“OT-Morpho set October 26 as the date for new presidential election, claiming it was the earliest they could reset its systems ahead of a fresh poll. It’s not a coincidence that the new election date falls on the birthday of President Uhuru Kenyatta. They want to give him a gift,” said Mr Odinga.

Raila Odinga had, a few days ago, accused OT Morpho of bribing an unnamed senior IEBC official and a government officer Ksh200 million each to acquire the tender to supply Kenya’s electronic poll management system.

The accusations emerged amid claims by NASA that the company, partly owned by the state of France, colluded with some IEBC officials to conduct an election fraud.

“Unless our irreducible minimum reform demands are met by the IEBC, we shall not have a repeat presidential election,” said Mr Odinga.

NASA’s key demands to the IEBC include printing of Forms 34As with the names of polling stations and candidates, and that they should be signed by returning officers in front of agents, the media, observers and the public.

NASA also demands the use of another printing firm other than Al Ghurair in printing of ballot papers.

NASA also wants the introduction of election monitors who will also get to sign Forms 34As and 34Bs before the results are announced.

The Opposition outfit equally wants new returning officers to be appointed in the 291 constituencies while the current ones to serve as election managers.

When it comes to the transmission of results the coalition wants only scanned images through the KIEMS to the constituency and national tallying centers which shouldn’t be displayed before they are verified.

The ICT framework should also be beefed up with close supervision of the agents and the IEBC to prevent anomalies experienced previously.

The Opposition coalition further demands that the electoral body should ditch OT-Morpho Company for a new technology firm.

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Brian Okoth
Story By Brian Okoth
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