'Rebel' commissioners wanted to force poll re-run, says Wafula Chebukati

In statement yesterday, Chebukati said contrary to the four commissioners allegations of operating an opaque tallying and verification exercise, he had involved them in the process to a point that they were announcing the results of various constituencies as they were verified.

"During a briefing meeting held on August 15 at around 3.00pm before the final declaration of the presidential election results, the four commissioners, Juliana Cherera, Francis Wanderi, Julius Nyangaya and Irene Masit demanded that the chairperson moderates the results for the purpose of forcing an election rerun contrary to their oath of office," he said.

"The chairman refused to yield to this unconstitutional and illegal demand and proceeded to declare the results of the presidential election as received from the polling stations and contained in form 34A in accordance with the law," the statement added. The IEBC chairman also indefinitely suspended the Mombasa and Kakamega governor elections well as parliamentary elections for Kitui rural Kacheliba , Pokot South and Rongai which were scheduled for August 23.

He said he decided to postpone the elections due to harassment, intimidation and threats in the course of the election which had led to the death of Daniel Musyoka, the returning officer for Embakasi East who disappeared on August 11 as well as the injuring of two officials, Prof Abdi Guliye and Boya Molu.

"In view of the prevailing circumstances, the commission has postponed the by elections slated for August 23, to a date to be announced through a gazette notice," he said.

Unresolved killing

While mourning the death of Musyoka, whose body was found in Loitoktok on Wednesday, Chebukati recalled that IEBC had lost an ICT manager, Chris Musando in the 2017 General Election whose killing has never been resolved.

Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) chairman Wafula Chebukati. [File, Standard]

"The figures (on presidential outcome) announced by Chebukati are null and void and must be quashed by a court of law," Raila said.

Poll pressure

However, the President-elect, Ruto praised Chebukati as hero who had amazed Kenyans and the world for the transparent transmission of results and his resolve to uphold the law and the constitution despite a lot of pressure and intimidation.

Meanwhile, ODM Mombasa governor candidate yesterday protested the postponement of the polls claiming that this was a ploy to suppress voter turnout in Mombaa and kakamega which are Azimio strongholds.

Abdullswamad Nassir, who has expressed confidence of winning the Mombasa governor seat which had been scheduled for August 23 but have since postponed, said Mombasa is still an Azimio stronghold with most elected legislatures and MCAs.

"It is not a coincidence that there was postponement of elections in Mombasa and Kakamega counties which are both ODM strongholds. That was a ploy to cut on voters' turnout. Even if they postpone the election dates again, they can only postpone the win but cannot stop it," he said.