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September 19, 2017

Chiloba to remain in IEBC, October 17 poll team

IEBC chair Wafula Chebukati (R) confers with the CEO Ezra Chiloba at the press conference in Nairobi where they announced the cancellation of the registration of voters in the diaspora who are outside Africa on February 7, 2017. /JACK OWUOR
IEBC chair Wafula Chebukati (R) confers with the CEO Ezra Chiloba at the press conference in Nairobi where they announced the cancellation of the registration of voters in the diaspora who are outside Africa on February 7, 2017. /JACK OWUOR

Ezra Chiloba has said he will remain in IEBC despite the Opposition's push to have him removed before the October 17 repeat election.

The CEO said the electoral agency will meet with stakeholders on Thursday to respond to NASA's threat to boycott the polls.

"I should not be part of the matrix on whether I leave the body or not. All stakeholders need to concentrate on ensuring the country is ready for the coming presidential election," he said in an interview on NTV on Wednesday.

He denied that he was part of the team that was in charge of the presidential election that was nullified by the Supreme Court.

"I personally have not seen the details from the Supreme Court so it would be presumptuous to say who is guilty," Chiloba said.

"From where I stand, yes, the election was free. For instance, this time around we had all the service providers on board unlike in 2012. As far as minor irregularities, I am of the opinion that they were not adequate to invalidate the election, but that is water under the bridge," he added.

The CEO said they were shocked by the Supreme Court ruling but had to comply with the orders.

He said the electoral body will still get ballot papers from Al Ghurair, despite NASA's objection to the firm.

"Al Ghurair is our preferred choice for printing ballot papers because we have an existing contract with them," he said.

He defended the August 8 general election saying it was one of the best conducted in the region.

"This was one of the best managed elections in the region. How come the Supreme Court nullified it? For instance the IEBC system was never hacked as its being rumoured bcause our system was secure."

Chiloba also said his working relationship with chair Wafula Chebukati is cordial, following a storm over a memo sent to him by Chebukati.

Raila Odinga has remained firm in his calls to have Chiloba removed from the election team.

NASA has issued fresh demands to IEBC for the polls to be conducted.

But President Uhuru Kenyatta has asked the Opposition to stop wasting time on press conferences and court matters and focus on the repeat poll.

Read: Back off IEBC matters, lobby group tells Opposition

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