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Bill on IEBC to be ready next week, says Parliament

 President William Ruto and Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua receive the report of the National Dialogue Committee (NADCO) from the Co-Chairs Kalonzo Musyoka and Kimani Ichung'wah at State House Nairobi. [PCS]

The Senate and the National Assembly have assured their commitment to ensure the National Dialogue Committee (Nadco) report is implemented.

Assembly Justice and Legal Affairs committees from both Houses said priority will be given to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), 2023, Bill.

Senator Hillary Sigei and MP George Murugara, the chairpersons of the respective committees, said they will lobby their members to finalise their report.

The joint committee was given 45 days to deliberate and issue recommendations on how to handle the report. They were to submit the report by the end of this week.

“It is imperative that the two committees finalise their sessions and make a report to both Houses of Parliament since there is a general misconception that we may not be committed to the National Dialogue Committee recommendations, which is not true,” said Sigei.

The joint committee met yesterday after two adjournments due to lack of quorum. They, however, failed to address the issue of timelines.

Electoral reforms

The IEBC Bill is among the eight seeking several electoral reforms recommended by the bi-partisan dialogue team.

Murugara said the panel has scheduled a public participation meeting tomorrow as it moves to fast-track the Bill, with 17 stakeholders having expressed interest in making their presentations.

“The joint Senate and National Assembly Justice and Legal Affairs Committees are giving priority to the IEBC bill so that we can have recruitment of IEBC commissioners so that they can be able to carry out pending by elections and boundaries delimitation,” said Murugara.

The Tharaka MP said the team would retreat to write a report on the Bill to be tabled before the National Assembly on Tuesday. It will then be taken to the Senate for concurrence.

The report made several recommendations after meeting stakeholders and experts. Among them is the change the composition of the Selection Panel for IEBC Commissioners.

“The IEBC Act, 2011, should be amended to provide that respective nominating bodies shall select the nominees for appointment through a competitive and transparent process and ensure that no more than two-thirds of the nominees are of the same gender,” says the report.

The report seeks to have IEBC review its operations after every General Election and make the necessary changes.

“The IEBC shall within three months of its reconstitution develop internal guidelines delineating...”

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