IEBC may clear blacklisted candidates

The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission and the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission on Tuesday differed on the fate of 106 people the ethics body has flagged as having integrity issues and whom it wants barred from running for office in the August General Election.

While the EACC insisted that they should be barred, the IEBC gave the strongest indication yet that it might let them off the hook.

“We have submitted to IEBC a list of 106 individuals whom we think ought not be allowed to contest for seats due to outstanding issues in line with the law,” EACC Chairman Eliud Wabukala said on Tuesday at the National Elections Conference 2017 held at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre in Nairobi.

He insisted that Kenyans, including IEBC, should ensure that only those with no integrity issues are chosen to leadership positions.

“Leadership is a great calling which necessitates adherence to the highest standards of integrity.  There is no better time than during an election when Kenyans have an opportunity to apply the integrity test to elect persons who will serve them,” Archbishop (Rtd) Wabukala said.

But a few minutes after him, IEBC Chairman Wafula Chebukati was reading from a different script, blaming the law for what might just be an unfortunate loophole in the implementation of Chapter Six of the Constitution that seeks to rid leadership of corrupt people and those with little integrity. He said the IEBC had collaborated with the EACC, the Attorney General and the Director of Public Prosecutions, all under the auspices of Chapter Six Working Group, to clear only those that abide by Chapter Six, but there was still a long way to go. 

“This collaboration can only be done within the law, and there are serious challenges. I hope Parliament shall enact laws to remove the legal roadblocks that this working group has encountered, he said, in what is now seen as a blow to integrity calls.

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