Raila’s latest onslaught against poll agency over relaying of results

Lawyers Jackson Awele, Ben Sihanya, presidential candidate Ekuru Aukot and lawyer Elias Mutuma.

The National Super Alliance( NASA) has lodged another onslaught against the electoral commission.

This time, the tussle is about the complementary system for voter identification and transmission of results.

The Opposition coalition, in a fresh suit, has moved to court complaining that the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) had not put in place the system and that there was no public participation in the whole process.

With only a month to the elections, NASA in its papers seen by The Standard wants the court to declare that the deadline set to put up the system is 60 days to the election date and that there should be no backup system.

“Considering that the said mechanism is only a backup system to the electronic voter identification and transmission system for results, it follows that unless the complementary system is established by regulations, the said elections scheduled for August 8, 2017 shall be exclusively electronic and without a complementary backup system,” the case filed by NASA’s lawyer Jackson Awele reads in part.

Complimentary system

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According to the Opposition, the delay in establishing the complementary system is shrouded in bad faith and given that there is no adequate time, the system cannot be installed without the approval of Parliament and the participation of all parties.

The new game plan by NASA will further plunge the Wafula Chebukati-led team into limbo as they try to defend the case in court.

“With less than 40 days to go, the respondent has failed or neglected to put in place the said mechanism through public participation and in consultation with the public or at all has additionally failed to provide information regarding the said system,” NASA claims.

“In the circumstances, the respondent is time-barred to develop a complementary mechanism of overt identification and transmission of election results with the input of relevant stakeholders in the electoral process.”

The system was introduced last year through an amendment to the election law, Elections Laws (Amendment) Bill 2016 and it was passed by the Jubilee MPs despite opposition.

Passed amendments

At the floor of the House, the Opposition under the Coalition for Reforms and Democracy ( CORD) protested in two sittings that were marred with fistfights and then stormed out as their Jubilee colleagues passed the amendments with no debate.

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NASA, the successor of CORD, now has seen a loophole to beat the tyranny of numbers, and this is through the courts.

It has won most of its cases touching on the scheduled elections and now the puzzle for the IEBC to stick to the set date is even harder.

The amendments allowed IEBC to come up with a manual system of identifying voters and transmitting results, complementary to the electronic tallying system.

Norman Magaya swore an affidavit in support of the case.

The case filed before High Court judge John Mativo will be mentioned today.

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