European Union (EU) Election Observation Mission Chief Observer Marietje Schaake has said they will deploy 30 long-term observers and 32 short-term observers to keep an eye on the August General elections. While addressing the press during a briefing in Nairobi today, she noted that international observers will come from different EU states and Norway and Switzerland, “They’ll be joined by local observers from the diplomatic community as well as a delegation of members of the European parliament,” she said. She added that the observers will be stationed all over the country.
As the general election draws closer, preparations are underway not only in the country but also from international bodies, who will be keenly observing. The Chief Observer said that the assessment will look at the way Kenyan and International laws are upheld during the election process and afterwards. The findings will be first presented in a preliminary statement after the elections.
Moreover, Ms Schaake said their work is just to monitor, but the responsibility of ensuring the elections are credible, free and fair rests with the relevant bodies in the country. She said that some Kenyans are concerned about a possible outbreak of violence, adding that every Kenyan should be given the chance to decide, “There’s a responsibility for each and everybody to grant each other the right and safety to vote according to their own conscience,” she said.
Ms Schaake said that the fact that the EU has embarked on such a big mission shows how important the August 8th election is. On Sunday, the EOM officials led by Marietje Schaake met with President Uhuru Kenyatta and Deputy President William Ruto at State House, who insisted it’s all systems go for the August elections.