IEBC promises to deliver a free and fair poll in August

Garissa county election manager Abdulwahab Hussein has come out to assure area residents that his office was committed towards delivering a free and fair elections come August 9.

Speaking today at Garissa government guest house during a one-day conference that brought together election stakeholders in the area, Hussein said that for the commission to deliver on its mandate, wananchi have even a bigger role to ensure that the polls are free.

Last week former Garissa Governor Nathif Jama while addressing the media after being cleared to vie for the seat urged area IEBC officials to ensure that the polls are free, fair and devoid of any manipulation as per the aspirations of Kenyans.

Jama revisited the contentious 2017 governorship results that saw Governor Ali Korane’s win challenged in court but was upheld.

The former governor said that while he has faith in the electoral body conducting the exercise smoothly, it was upon them to restore the faith among Kenyans who were still doubting them.

He said that it was a fact that some of the IEBC officials were compromised with the end result being a bungled election.

Hussein however said IEBC has taken steps to ensure that the polls are free adding that the Commission will take seriously the recruitment of polling clerks and returning officers among others to ensure that people of integrity are the ones to be picked.

“This is where you residents come in since you will tell us people with questionable characters so that we can weed them out. The names of all those who will picked for the various posts will be displayed in public notice boards so that wananchi can go through them. If you have an issues with any of the candidates picked, please let us know when that time comes,” he added.

Hussein said there are individuals who are known to be campaign agents of certain candidates but want to be recruited by the IEBC for the sole purpose of manipulating results in favor of their preferred candidates. “These are the people the commission want to get weeded out because they will compromise the credibility of the polls. We want to have people who are as neutral as possible,” he said.

While acknowledging that recruitment exercise was tedious and demanding, the officer was quick to note that the commission will do everything within its powers to ensure that it delivers credible and verifiable election.

Garissa County Commissioner Boaz Cherutich said that going forward IEBC, NCIC, office of register of political parties and EACC will be holding weekly meetings to review the elections preparedness.

Cherutich warned candidates vying for various political seats that stern action will be taken against those violating the code of conduct they signed with IEBC when they were being cleared.

“The candidates know very well what is expected of them given that they penned their signatures on the code of conduct by the IEBC. Let us all cooperate and operate within the law,” he said.

Leaders who spoke during the meeting raised concern over political intolerance, use of social media to incite communities against each other and campaigning past stipulated hours.

Dubat Amey an elder called on security apparatus led by the county commissioner to act tough on those found violating the law.



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