Three IEBC Commissioners have announced their resignation further crippling the electoral commission’s stability and casting doubts on its operations. The three commissioners, Consolata Nkatha Bucha Maina (vice chair), Paul Kurgat, and Margaret Mwachanya said following the severe deterioration of confidence in IEBC chairman Wafula Chebukati, they find their positions as Commissioners under his leadership no longer untenable. This comes after IEBC CEO Ezra Chiloba was sent on compulsory leave days ago, to pave way for an audit of procurements done last year.
The Commissioners, in a statement, said their positions require them to serve independent of any bias, prejudice, personal gain, benefit or care for political affiliation and must operate as a single unit and team, “There shouldn’t be a case of us versus them, the chair versus the CEO,” said Mwachanya, adding that failure by one part is failure for the whole team.
She noted IEBC has continued being dysfunctional since last year with arbitrary decison making, leaking internal documents to serve personal goals all which are against the laws that govern the conduct of the Commission’s leadership and staff, “The Commision must always serve the purpose we were appointed for and banish external players from the boardroom and reclaim independence.”
They criticized the IEBC chairman Chebukati for failing to steady the ship and provide a stable hand in difficult times that needed direction, “Instead the Commission’s boardroom has become a venue for peddling misinformation, a ground for brewing mistrust and a space for scrambling for and chasing glory,” said Mwachanya, “We’ve had statements released saying information has been issued by IEBC yet they are misinterpreted.”
They noted the events of the last ten days highlight the sad state of IEBC after CEO Chiloba was sent on compulsory leave, “It is right to take disciplinary measures against any officer and the necessary steps are contained in the Commission’s human resource manuals and laws that govern its conduct. However, the removal of a CEO is a weighty matter and shouldn’t be introduced as a by the way,” noted Mwachanya. Thy noted there was a scheduled meeting which should’ve been done when all the Commissioners were in the nation. Chiloba went to court to have the decision to suspend him revoked, however, the Employment and Labour Relations Court declined his request. It remains to be seen what will be the next move, as the electoral commission faces public scrutiny with each passing day.