Kenyan election official quits, says board not ready for credible poll


One of Kenya's Independent Electoral Boundaries Commission (IEBC) commissioners, Roselyne Akombe has resigned from her position, saying that the electoral agency can not be trusted to hold free and credible repeat presidential elections next week.She said that the commission is under siege as staffs are getting last minute instructions on changes in technology and electronic transmission of results while the training of presiding officers is being rushed for fear of attacks from opposition protesters. Akombe told the BBC from NY that she had received anonymous threats and feared for her life.

The commission in its current state can surely not guarantee a credible election on 26 October 2017.

Akombe said that she had questioned her role at the commission for many months, but had "soldiered on". The official added that others on the panel needed to voice their opposition, as well.

She said the election could not be credible when staff were getting last minute instructions on changes to technology and the electronic transmission of results, and when training was being rushed for fear of attacks from protesters.

"The commission has become a party to the current crisis".

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"We need the commission to be courageous and speak out that this election as planned can not meet the basic expectations of a credible election".

According to the statement, Akombe says IEBC staff are being intimidated by political actors and protestors and the fear for their lives.

Last week, opposition leader, Raila Odinga pulled out of the repeat elections saying that IEBC can not be trusted to hold free and fair polls.

Ms Akombe said it was highly likely that officials presiding over the vote on October 26 would...

More than 1,200 people were killed in violence after a disputed presidential election in December 2007.

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Kenya has witnessed weeks of streets protests leading to the deaths of several opposition supporters.

"The lessons from 2007/08 are too fresh, lest we forget", Akombe concluded on Wednesday.

Odinga on Tuesday suspended a protest campaign to push for reforms after three people were shot dead in demonstrations.

The election board has said the poll will go ahead with seven candidates on the ballot, including Odinga.

Kenyatta has been in power since 2013.

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