CORD leade Raila Odinga addressing his supporters outside the IEBC offices.

Nairobi, Kenya: CORD leaders led by Raila Odinga and their supporters had to run for their dear lives after police lobbed tear gas canisters at the opposition leaders and their supporters who were protesting outside Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission offices calling for the commissioners exit.

Tens of police officers have been mobilised to guard Anniversary Towers where Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission have offices, ahead of the planned CORD protest.

The officers are under instructions not to allow any protester near the premises.

Police want the organisers of the protest to cancel it and instead seek an alternative solution to their problems.

Cord plans a march on the offices to force the commission out ahead of the 2017 elections. The protest was set to start on Monday morning and Cord co-principal Kalonzo Musyoka had asked their supporters to turn up in large numbers for the peaceful event until the team leaves.

But the commission has refused to leave office and instead asked the politicians to use legal means to remove them.

Nairobi police boss Japheth Koome said they would not allow the planned protest and has asked the planners to seek alternative ways of addressing their grievances.

“The protest will not be allowed and we will use all means possible to stop it. Let the politicians seek other ways of addressing the issues,” said Koome.

Police plan to disperse anyone who will arrive at the commission offices for the march. The politicians say the commission has lost credibility to hold the elections and want it out.

IEBC said it expects Cord and all citizens to uphold the rule of law as it demands the same of others.

“The Commission will not be manipulated or intimidated or succumb to pressure in the performance of its mandate. It will hold steadfast to the law and render fair and just decisions,” said the commission in a statement.

It added it is committed to implementing the Election Operations Plan and taking other elaborate measures to ensure the next election will be free and flawless. These preparations will suffer if the Commission is subjected to frequent disruption, unfounded agitation, meddling and interference. We urge the public and all stakeholders to support and facilitate the Commission’s efforts of ensuring a free and fair election.

“The Commission remains committed to engagement with all players on all aspects of its work and the electoral process provided it is done within the law, with decorum and with due regards to its independence.”