The commissioners said they have no faith in the leadership of the electoral board [Baz Ratner/Reuters]
Half of Kenya’s electoral board has resigned “with immediate effect”, as the commissioners cited lack of faith in the organisation’s leadership.
Vice chair of Kenya’s Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) Connie Nkatha Maina and two commissioners – Margaret Mwachanya and Paul Kurgat – said they left their posts because they have no faith in chair Wafula Chebukati, adding that the organisation is dysfunctional.
“The institution has continued to be dysfunctional, with arbitrary decision-making, leaking of internal documents … and pursuing of personal interests,” the three officials said in a statement released at a news conference in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi.
“The chairman has, in several instances, failed to be the steady and stable hand to steer the commission ship,” the statement added.
Last week, the commission sent its chief executive on three months’ compulsory leave pending an audit, it said, without giving a detailed reason for the move.
During the East African country’s general election last year the commission was at the centre of controversy and was accused by the opposition of tampering with the vote.
The country’s Supreme Court annulled the August presidential poll result saying the electoral board committed “irregularities and illegalities”, harming the integrity of the election.
Opposition leader Raila Odinga pulled out of the presidential election rerun saying he had no faith in the commission’s ability to conduct a free and fair election.
Incumbent Uhuru Kenyatta won the vote rerun.