At least 30 small political parties on Monday went to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) offices and held a meeting with its commissioners, asking that a March 27 deadline for parties to submit membership list be rescinded.
Under the Political Parties Liaison Committee, the representatives accused the IEBC of unilaterally changing critical election timelines that they said were hurting them.
At the same time, the commission will on Wednesday, jointly with the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission, issue guidelines on who between them has the authority to stop politicians who have corruption cases from running for office.
At the commission’s office at Anniversary Towers, Nairobi, the liaison committee said the commission should tell them what the March 27 deadline means. “Even with a stay order, the commission gazetted a date that is different from the April 8 date we know. This is contempt of court,” said the committee chairman Philip Abonyo of the Federal Party of Kenya.
The team was further infuriated by a member of the commission’s legal team who said they were expecting a favourable court ruling to alter the deadline.
“You are forcing us to stick to a deadline that you are hoping a court will rule in your favour. We are the political parties and are the only stakeholder that will give you that list. Remove that deadline here and now, and then we will start talking. What is the pressure?” asked Mr Benedict Wachira of the Social Democratic Party.
The meeting ended with a promise from the commission to meet them on Friday, and to communicate the outcome of the appeal to allow it to advance its March 27 deadline.