Aspirants in the 8th August Polls Four thousand aspirants were cleared by the Registrar of Political Parties (RPP) to run as independent candidates in the 8th August General Election. Ten are seeking the Presidency and 27 the governorship. There are 31 independents vying for senator, 215 MP, 14 woman representative and the rest are seeking Member of the County Assembly (MCA) positions.
The Presidential seat has attracted 18 aspirants. They include: Professor Michael Wainaina - PhD, Peter Ondeng (Restore and Build Kenya Party), Abduba Dida (Tunza Coalition), Kennedy Mongare (Federal Party of Kenya) and Ekuru Aukot (Thirdway Alliance Party). Joe Nyagah (Independent Presidential Candidate, Nazlin Omar (Independent Presidential Candidate), Cyrus Jirongo (UDP Party), Uhuru Kenyatta (Jubilee Party), Raila Amolo Odinga (ODM), David Munga, Stephen Oweke Oganga, Robert Mukwana Juma, Joseph Ngacha, Japheth Kavinga, Nixon Kukubah, Joseph Musyoka and Erastus Nyamera.
Candidates vetting Sixteen Government agencies will vet all aspirants seeking elective positions ahead of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC’s) nominations that starts on May 28. The 16 consist of the Judiciary, Office of the Attorney General and Department of Justice, IEBC, Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission, Directorate of Criminal Investigations, Office of the Registrar of Political Parties, Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, Public Service Commission, Higher Education Loans Board (HELB), Kenya Revenue Authority, Commission for University Education, Kenya National Examination Council, Department of Immigration, the Official Receiver, Credit Information Sharing Association of Kenya and professional bodies. Vetting will ensure that only people of high integrity presents themselves for election.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court begun hearing a case filed by the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNCHR) seeking an advisory opinion on the strict implementation of Chapter Six of the Constitution. KNCHR wants the Supreme Court to make a specific finding as to whether Chapter Six of the Constitution sets up a fit and proper test for leadership for both elective and appointive offices and whether that test should be objective or subjective and also whether that test should be wider than the criminal test.
Election Preparedness The electoral agency started the process to remove of 2.9 million ghost voters from the electoral register. The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission said the 30-day exercise will involve verifying the 19.53 million Kenyans who have been registered to vote in this year's General Election.
The opposition - NASA - protested the reshuffling of officers in the polls team as a plot to rig the election. In their defense, the electoral commission has defended its list of 47 county and 290 constituency returning officers. The opposition 3coalition National Super Alliance demanded the electoral body to zone and distributes polling stations equally among the three leading mobile and data operators. They argued that this would guarantee the required quality, speed, and precision of presidential election results transmission. The zoning and distribution should recognise the 3G reach of each of the service providers — namely Safaricom, Airtel and Telkom Kenya.
Disputes over Ballot Paper Printing & Presidential Vote Tallying
The Public Procurement Administrative Review Board on Friday cancelled Sh2.5 billion tender process after a Kenyan company petitioned against the method that was followed to identify the winning company. Earlier in the year Al Ghurair award had been cancelled. The review board delivered its decision and allowed IEBC to engage in direct tendering.
High Court said that late conclusion of the disputes could either impede the process of printing ballot papers or result into omission of names as a result of late transmission of rulings to the Commission.
At the same time, Opposition threatened not to participate in the election, if vote tallying is to be done in Nairobi’s National Tallying Centre. This threat came after IEBC appealed the ruling on vote tallying. On the same day, Matiang’i the Cabinet Secretary of Education banned campaign rallies in schools.
Civil society lobby groups have joined the Opposition in asking the electoral body to withdraw an appeal it filed in the Court of Appeal with the aim of overturning the High Court decision that presidential election results announced by returning officers at constituency level are final.
Furthermore, the Government’s Chief of Staff met with security chiefs where he ordered them to monitor any external funds coming to Kenya.