IEBC Officials Arrested During Secret Meeting at Politician's Home

  • IEBC officials in a polling station
    IEBC Official in a polling station assisting voters
  • Update: Four IEBC officials, who were arrested after attending a meeting held by a parliamentary aspirant, were fired by the commission on Monday, August 8.

    The Homa Bay county IEBC returning officer, Fredrick Apopa affirmed that the officials engaged in election malpractice by attending the meeting.

    The returning officer noted that the fate of the officials rests in the hands of the police and the office of the Director of the Public Prosecutions to decide on whether to take further action against them. 

    Four Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) officials were arrested on Sunday, August 7, after they were found holding a closed-door meeting at a parliamentary aspirant's home in Homa Bay county.

    The officials include a presiding officer, two deputy presiding officers and a clerk. The four had been recruited by the commission to man over Kwabwai and Kanyadoto wards. 

    Media reports indicated that the county residents got wind of the secret meeting and rushed to the politician's home in order to disrupt the gathering. 

    An image of vehicles parked outside a police station
    An image of vehicles parked outside a police station.

    The four election officials were later frog-matched to the nearby police station. Some election officials at the scene, however, managed to escape from the house in due time before they were nabbed by the irate residents. 

    Witnesses at the scene alleged that the IEBC officials were colluding with some of the candidates in order to gain an upper hand in the Tuesday, August 9 poll. 

    “I was tipped that the IEBC officials were striking a deal with the candidates to ensure that ballot papers are marked and stuffed into ballot boxes in their favour on the election day,” a witness told NTV

    Ndhiwa sub-county police boss, Paul Rioba, affirmed that investigations were ongoing in order to establish the basis of the discussions. He noted that the matter would be dealt with accordingly.

    The news comes as IEBC chairman Wafula Chebukati and his commissioners have been on a sensitisation campaign, assuring Kenyans of a free, fair, and credible election period. 

    The commission chair announced that approximately 22.1 million registered voters will be slated to exercise their constitutional rights on Tuesday, August 9 poll. 

    He noted that his commission had dispatched adequate staff, including presiding officers, deputies and clerks, in order to effectively manage the elections. 

    “I assure you that IEBC is very ready for the elections. I want to appeal to all Kenyans to campaign peacefully and respect one another during this electioneering period,” Chebukati stated. 

    An IEBC official coordinates voters at a polling station in Kenya.
    An IEBC official coordinates voters at a polling station in the 2013 General Elections.