By Stephen Makabila
Parliament is planning to nip in the bud perceived ‘two centres of power’ within the Independent Electoral Commission of Kenya ( IEBC) by amending the law.
Some legislators are mulling on an amendment on IEBC Act to be tabled this week, six months to the General Election along side another Bill to make Biometric Voter Registration (BVR) mandatory. This will put focus on IEBC a month after revising its initial election roadmap for the March 4.
“It’s a dangerous state of affairs at IEBC that has to be fixed before elections. As things stand now, the country faces serious risks in case of any slight dispute over the presidential election results,” noted Ikolomani MP Bonny Khalwale.
Khalwale told The Standard On Sunday he had already drafted an amendment, but was first seeking consensus among MPs before moving.
“I do not want individual glory and will seek full House support for the amendment to pass smoothly,” said Khalwale.
Khalwale claimed IEBC chairman Isaack Hassan and the Chief Executive Officer James Oswago command parallel centres of power.
He said documents in his possession show the BVR tendering was clean, but was twice shot down by the CEO.
“The two centres of power are to blame for what befell the BVR tendering. The chairman was helpless,” added Khalwale.
Nominated MP Musikari Kombo said he would readily support the amendment because such power struggles are unhealthy in any institution.
“It is absolutely timely. It is a dangerous scenario that is why our current Coalition Government has problems,” added Kombo.
Khalwale says the proposed amendment makes the IEBC chairman the head of the commission with final word on tendering and election materials.