IEBC must be seen to be independent

In Summary

• New recommendations have been made  for the selection of independent electoral commissioners

• The August 2022 presidential election was very close with President Ruto winning by barely one percent

It is generally accept that the August 2022 election was free and fair, despite the narrow margin of victory for President William Ruto.

The International  Republican Institute and the National Democratic Institute have just issued a report recommending changes in the way the IEBC is constituted.

Various controversies surrounded the election, among them the decision by four IEBC commissioners to reject the announcement of Ruto as the winning candidate. Supporters of Raila Odinga said this showed that the election was fatally flawed. Supporters of Ruto said the four commissioners were handpicked and politically motivated.

All this goes to show that the IEBC commissioners must be absolutely impartial. This is especially important if the election is very close, as in August. It will ensure that state actors cannot determine the outcome of the election - it was remarkable that the IEBC and the Supreme  Court both accepted Ruto as the winner despite the overt support of the former government for Raila.

This was a triumph for strong independent institutions in Kenya. This must continue. Both opposition and government must work on a mechanism to appoint IEBC commissioners who are non-aligned and truly independent.

Quote of the day: "Nothing is more intolerable than to have to admit to yourself your own errors."

Ludwig van Beethoven
The German composer was born on December 16, 1770

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