‘Boycott petitions hearing’- disgruntled Raila tells 4 dissenting IEBC commissioners
Azimio la Umoja-One Kenya coalition supremo Raila Odinga now says that the four dissenting Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) commissioners should boycott the petitions filed against them, in the interest of constitutionalism and the rule of law.
The four commissioners; Vice Chair Juliana Cherera alongside commissioners Justus Nyang’aya, Irene Masit and Francis Wanderi were summoned to respond to four petitions after they rejected presidential results announced by IEBC Chairperson Wafula Chebukati on August 15, saying the final tally was conducted in an 'opaque' manner.
Addressing media on Thursday, November 24, 2022, Raila maintained his stance that the four commissioners were not guilty of the claims tabled in the petitions.
He also claimed that the summoning and probe of the commissioners was politically instigated to settle scores.
"A member of a commission is not liable to anything done in good faith. By summoning these commissioners, the parliament is usurping the role of the tribunal," he stated.
He added: "The conduct of the commission was part of the election petition. None of the commissioners was found to have committed any offence; only Chebukati was found to have acted unilaterally.
"This probe is therefore politically motivated. It is a continuation of the witch-hunt mission that Ruto is on. In fact, we advise the commissioners to boycott it in the interest of constitutionalism and the rule of law."
Hearing on petition begins
The latest address came moments after Azimio supremos, Raila, Kalonzo Musyoka and Martha Karua attended the beginning of a public hearing on petitions seeking the removal of the four dissenting IEBC commissioners.
Advocates for the commissioners are Apollo Mboya, Jotham Arua, Donald Kipkorir, Danstan Omari and Gichamba.
The proceeding was conducted by the National Assembly's Justice and Legal Affairs Committee (JLAC).
Petitioners include that the four commissioners, through their action of issuing a press statement rejecting election results failed to promote public confidence in the office that they hold, and brought dishonour to the nation and lack of dignity to the office contrary to article 73 (1) (a) of the constitution.
Other petitioners are; Denis Ndwiga, Owuor Steve Jerry, and Geoffrey Langat. The second petitioner, Dennis Ndwiga, argues that the commissioners violated the constitution by demonstrating partiality and biased conduct in agreeing with an alleged proposal to alter the results of the general elections in favour of one candidate or in the alternative to force a run-off contrary to article 10 (7) of the constitution.
He further accuses the four of agreeing to the incentives and giving in to the proposals by the National Security Advisory Council to alter the results of presidential elections.
Ndwiga argues that by accepting the alleged proposal to alter the presidential results, the four willingly subverted the will of the people of Kenya contrary to the constitution.
The petitioner bases his argument on claims by a section of the commission led by Chebukati and commissioners Boya Mulo and Abdi Guliye that there was an attempt by the National National Security Advisory Council to alter the results of the presidential election in favour of Azimio la Umoja - One Kenya coalition candidate Raila Odinga, who lost to President William Ruto.