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January 22, 2018

Delete my name from IEBC case, Chiloba tells commission workers' union lawyer

IEBC CEO Ezra Chiloba address journalists at the Bomas of Kenya on the preparations ahead of the August election on July 25, 2017. /JACK OWUOR
IEBC CEO Ezra Chiloba address journalists at the Bomas of Kenya on the preparations ahead of the August election on July 25, 2017. /JACK OWUOR

IEBC CEO Ezra Chiloba has demanded an apology from a law firm which filed a suit seeking to stop the electoral agency from sacking him.

Chiloba, in a letter to the Wambui Ndegwa and Associates, says he did not give instructions to the law firms to proceed with the matter.

The letter drafted by IKM Advocates demands that the apology is published prominently in the first four pages of the Daily Nation and Standard newspapers.

"Take notice that if the above demands are not complied with within the next 48 hours from the date of receipt of this letter, I will file a complaint with LSK and the Advocates Disciplinary Committee for action," Chiloba says.

"I will also file proceedings against you and your client for defamation, breach of privacy and dignity, deliberate character assassination, breach of the right to associate with anyone he does not desire and such other orders as may be appropriate."

On Thursday, a body trading as Kenya Independent Commission Workers Union moved to court seeking orders to stop IEBC from sacking Chiloba and some secretariat officials.

They named Immaculate Kassait, James Muhati, Betty Nyabuto, Praxides Tororey and Moses Kipkogey as some the officials they want to be spared.

The said union went to the court to stop the electoral commission's bosses from taking any form of disciplinary action against the officials.

The case is before the Labour and Employment Relations Court.

Read: Union asks court to save Chiloba, secretariat officials from IEBC purge

But Chiloba, on the other hand, says he did not instruct the Wambui Ndegwa and Associates to execute the case on his behalf.

He wants the law firm to confirm in writing that at no point did he give the instruction.

"We write to you demanding that you issue an unqualified apology to our client for the use of his name on terms acceptable to our client," Chiloba says in the September 8 letter.

"Withdraw any references to our client in the suit and forward to us the duly filed amended statement of claim with all references to our client crossed out and/or omitted and notice of withdrawal of the application in which our client was named."

This was after chairman Wafula Chebukati said heads will roll at the poll agency following the nullification of President Uhuru Kenyatta's win in the August 8 vote.

The commission was found guilty of electoral offences in a petition filed by NASA presidential candidate Raila Odinga at the Supreme Court.

Chief Justice David Maraga on September 1 said the court was satisfied that the electoral commission did not conduct last months' election in accordance with the Constitution and related poll laws.

In this regard, the court ordered fresh presidential elections which the commission has already said will be held on October 17.

Chiloba, in his complaint, says the said suit has gravely injured his profession and further caused him and his family great anguish.

This came even as the electoral commission remains split on whether the secretariat should man the fresh poll.

Chebukati has named a list of officials to head a project team he says will oversee the new election. This has also been contested by NASA and Jubilee.

Also read: Crisis as 4 IEBC commissioners defend Chiloba

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