Court throws out bid to oust Chiloba, Chebukati and other IEBC officials

Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) Chairman Wafula Chebukati (left) and CEO Ezra Chiloba at Anniversary Towers, Nairobi, on April 5, 2017 during the weekly media briefing on issues the August polls. PHOTO | SALATON NJAU | NATION MEDIA GROUP
IEBC Chairman Wafula Chebukati (left) and CEO Ezra Chiloba. A judge has thrown out a case seeking their ouster. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

The High Court has dismissed an application seeking the ouster of electoral commission chairman Wafula Chebutaki and seven other officials.

In the ruling delivered on Monday, Justice John Mativo said the case by three voters was premature, because it was filed even before the Supreme Court gave its detailed judgment on Raila Odinga’s presidential election petition.

According to the judge, the Supreme Court did not indict any of the officials of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).

Mr Brian Asin, Mr Ben Wanasakaami, and Kevin Alwang’a wanted Mr Chebukati, Vice Chairperson Consolata Nkatha, commissioners Roselyn Akombe, Abdi Guliye, Margaret Mwachanya, Paul Kurgat, and Boya Molu, as well as CEO Ezra Chiloba, stopped from participating in the repeat presidential election, scheduled for October 26.

The apex court nullified the August 8 presidential election on grounds that they were not conducted in accordance to the Constitution and the electoral laws.


Bungled elections

The three argued that having bungled the elections, the IEBC officials had been indicted and the public lost confidence in them.

They should therefore be stopped from managing the repeat polls, they argued.

But the Judge said that the allegations that the Supreme Court indicted the IEBC officials had no basis and the petition was therefore premised on an incorrect factual basis.

“Clearly, the Supreme Court did not indict the first to eight respondents as alleged nor did it find either of them criminally culpable,” Justice Mativo said.