IEBC Announces Hefty Fines for Politicians Using Public Resources

  • IEBC Chairperson Wafula Chebukati at the Constitutional Commissions & Independent Offices (CCIOs) on April 13, 2022.
    IEBC Chairperson Wafula Chebukati at the Constitutional Commissions & Independent Offices (CCIOs) on April 13, 2022.
    Courtesy IEBC
  • The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has warned politicians using public resources in their campaigns risk hefty fines for contravening the electoral laws.

    In a communication to public servants involved in the August 9 polls, the IEBC announced that effective immediately, no government official is allowed to participate in campaigns, neither are aspirants allowed to use public resources in their campaigns.

    In the communication, IEBC warned that those found culpable risk fines of up to Ksh2 million or a jail term of up to six years, or both.

    IEBC chairperson Wafula Chebukati addresses 2022 presidential aspirants at a pre-candidate registration meeting at the Bomas of Kenya on Monday, May 23, 2022
    IEBC chairperson Wafula Chebukati addresses 2022 presidential aspirants at a pre-candidate registration meeting at the
    Bomas of Kenya on Monday, May 23, 2022
    IEBC

    "Section 14(1) of the Election Offences Act 2016 provides that a candidate, referendum committee or another person shall not use public resources for the purpose of campaigning during an election or a referendum.

    "A person who fails to comply with this notice commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding Kenya Shillings two million (Ksh2,000,000) or imprisonment for a term not exceeding six (6) years or to both," the electoral agency stated.

    IEBC further warned that any aspirant seeking an elective seat and using public resources also risks being disqualified. 

    "Any candidate who is a Member of Parliament, a County Governor, a Deputy County Governor, a Member of a County Assembly, an employee of a statutory corporation or of a company in which the government owns a controlling interest is required to state the facilities attached to the candidate or any equipment normally in the custody of the candidate by virtue of that office," the statement added.

    Notably, the IEBC stated its members or any person designated by the electoral agency or any authorised agency has been given the power to impound or to order the impounding of any state resources that are unlawfully used in an election campaign.

    This communication comes in the background of an impending arrest of Kimilili Member of Parliament, Didmus Barasa, over an allegation of branding a government vehicle with United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party colours and his campaign portrait.

    Police alleged that the vehicle’s registration number plate was changed to hide its original identity.

    Kimilili MP Didmus Barasa (left) and a car branded with UDA colours
    Kimilili MP Didmus Barasa (left) and a car branded with UDA colours.
    File

    Kimilili sub-county police boss, Mwita Marua, explained that the vehicle whose original registration details read GK948J was impounded in the homestead of Barasa at Nasianda village.

    The lawmaker, told Kenyans.co.ke on Tuesday, May 24, that he was not aware of the raid as he was away from his homestead. 

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