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I won’t resign, says Kenya’s election umpire Chebukati

Wafula Chebukati

Chairman of Kenya’s Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), Wafula Chebukati said he would not resign despite the invalidation of the election of President Uhuru Kenyatta that he supervised.

In a statement, Chebukati defended his commission and said it did justice to the election. However, he welcomed the Court’s ruling.

Chebukati called on the Director of Public Prosecutions to investigate and prosecute any member of the commission found culpable of election malpractices.

He said his IEBC will make make internal changes to staff ahead of the fresh presidential election.

He also urged the Supreme Court to act fast and provide a detailed ruling within the 21 days so that the Commission can correct the errors committed.

In a surprise judgement, the Supreme Court nullified President Uhuru’s re-election, ordering a fresh presidential election in 60 days.

Chief Justice David Maraga, who read the majority ruling said the IEBC overlooked the Constitution and committed various illegalities affecting the integrity of polls. Said Maraga:

“A declaration is hereby issued that the Presidential Election held on 8th August 2017 was not conducted in accordance with the Constitution and the applicable law rendering the declared result invalid, null and void;

“A declaration is hereby issued that the 3rd Respondent(Uhuru Kenyatta) was not validly declared as the President elect and that the declaration is invalid, null and void; “

An order is hereby issued directing the 1st Respondent to organise and conduct a fresh Presidential Election in strict conformity with the Constitution and the applicable election laws within 60 days of this determination under Article 140(3) of the Constitution.

Two judges, Njoki Ndung’u and Jackton Ojwang’, ruled that the election was free and fair.

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