Jubilee wants IEBC to fund its primaries

Jubilee Party wants the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) to finance the nomination of its candidates.

National Assembly Majority Leader Aden Duale said they will use a lacuna in the law to request the IEBC to factor in its budget funds for the party nominations.

The remark raised fears that taxpayers’ money could be used to pay for an exercise normally funded by political parties through fees raised from aspirants for various seats.

Addressing the Press after the campaign team’s meeting at the party headquarters in Pangani, Nairobi, Mr Duale said the law is silent about who should pay when a political party requests IEBC to oversee its nominations.

“Our work is to request the IEBC to oversee Jubilee Party’s nominations, then the commission should present its budget to the National Treasury for funds,” said Mr Duale. “We will approve it if brought to the National Assembly as a supplementary budget.”

According to the Election Laws (Amendment) Act 2016 assented to by President Uhuru Kenyatta on September 13, EABC can be requested by a party to conduct and supervise its nominations for presidential, parliamentary or county elections. But it is silent on who should pay for it.

Section 32 of the Elections Act of 2011 that required political parties to bear the expenses when they request IEBC to supervise their primaries was amended.

According to the head of Jubilee Secretariat Raphael Tuju, the party on Tuesday wrote to IEBC to formally start the discussion and processes for the primaries.

President Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto have reiterated before that the involvement of IEBC will ensure that the nominations are free and fair.

Speaking during the launch of Jubilee party two months ago, President Kenyatta said that the party will look for money needed to have electoral commission conduct the primaries.

President Kenyatta who is JP leader stated that every candidate will be given a fair chance to compete for elective positions through a nomination process that would be overseen IEBC.

The proposal to have JP primaries expenses settled by the National Treasury is likely to be met by opposition from the Cord Coalition.

Last week, Raila Odinga led Party ODM, ruled out the possibility of involving IEBC in its primaries citing lack of funds.

Tuju’s team was meeting for the second time to deliberate on the strategies that will ensure that President Kenyatta retains his seat in the next General Election.

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