Azimio la Umoja Coalition leaders have castigated the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) leadership for interdicting Deputy CEO Ruth Kulundu.
The leaders who held protests outside IEBC offices at Anniversary Towers on Monday accused Chairman Wafula Chebukati and CEO Marjan Hussein of eroding the gains made in the electoral system in Kenya since 2007.
In a joint statement read by Ruaraka MP TJ Kajwang, Azimio said Chebukati and Marjan’s latest actions portray an institution that has abandoned its independence and resorted to pleasing the executive.
“While their actions remain heroic in the eyes of beneficiaries, the Azimio leadership puts the duo on notice for eroding the gains we have made in transforming the electoral system in Kenya,” the Ruaraka MP said.
The interdiction of IEBC Kulundu was top of Azimio’s grievances, saying the move is meant to intimidate those not playing by Chebukati and Marjan’s demands.
“It is part of a well-orchestrated scheme to intimidate public officers who stand by the rule of law but also question upholding free and fair elections,” Ojwang said.
Azimio demanded that IEBC immediately reinstates Kulundu to her position within 24 hours, failure to which it will take a stern action against Chebukati and Marjan.
“…that IEBC immediately reinstates Ruth Kulundu to her rightful position of deputy CEO within the next 24 hours. Failure to which we shall take stern action against Wafula Chebukati and Hussein Marjan.”
The party says if indeed Kulundu made mistakes, then proper channels should be followed in regards to disciplinary action and that she should be accorded a fair hearing.
The party also demanded that CEO Marjan commits to abide by the law and discharge his duties diligently, failure to which its members will demand that he relinquishes his position ahead of the boundaries review exercise.
Azimio further says the IEBC Secretariat as it stands is dysfunctional and cannot be trusted to discharge its constitutional mandate properly.
The peaceful match to IEBC offices had early turned messy as police lobbed teargas to disperse Azimio supporters who had accompanied the leaders to Anniversary Towers.
At the gate, heavy locks welcomed the leaders as there was no one from the commission to listen to their demands. They accused Chebukati of locking himself up and refusing to give them audience.