Mudavadi warns against last minute changes to election laws

Mudavadi warns against last minute changes to election laws

BY JOAN  WANJIKU,NAIROBI, 3RD FEB,2022-The Kenya Kwanza Alliance led by ANC party leader and his Ford Kenya counterpart Moses Wetang’ula took its campaigns to Kajiado County Thursday.

The leaders who have partnered with Deputy President’s UDA party held rallies in Namanga, Ilbisil, Maili Tisa and Kajiado town.

Addressing residents, Mudavadi termed suspicious and untimely plans to amend the election laws just months before the August 9 polls.

The controversial bill that was tabled on the floor of the House Wednesday by Majority Leader Amos Kimunya has elicited mixed reactions from different quarters.

The Bill seeks among other proposals to bring back both manual and electronic transmission of presidential results.

Mudavadi said the move by the government does not promote a level playing field for all aspirants and would fan poll-related chaos.

“The Government must stop the habit of changing the rules of the game at the eleventh hour,” he warned adding that such a move is meant to prepare the ground for electoral malpractice.

“This is a bad law and please do not change the law at the last minute in favour of the project. The move will only affect the elections and its credibility,” said Mudavadi.

If passed, failure to transmit the results electronically would not be grounds for the Supreme Court to nullify the presidential vote.

The Elections (Amendment) Bill, 2022 also provides for a complementary mechanism for voter identification.

This means that IEBC officials would be allowed to use manual registers where Kiems kits fail.

Among the provisions is that returning officers managing the election would have to travel to Nairobi with the results after transmitting the same electronically.

IEBC chairman Wafula Chebukati would only be allowed to declare the presidential results after receiving results from the 290 constituencies, unlike the current law where it is allowed to declare presidential results if the remaining results would not affect the overall results of the election.

Accompanied by UDA MPs, the leaders took a swipe at the Azimio La Umoja coalition terming it a State House project meant to propel ODM leader Raila Odinga to the presidency.

Deputy President William Ruto is said to be out of the country and will join the alliance campaign caravan in Mombasa on Saturday.

Senator Murkomen said the bill was one meant to stifle the media.

“By gagging the media, what the Government is trying to do is to lay the ground for electoral malpractice. We will not allow the country to go the 2007/08 way,” he said.

Mr. Ichungwa said together with his colleagues in Parliament will pass the supplementary budget and ensure the electoral agency is well funded so that it is able to carry out credible elections.

Former Machakos Senator Johnstone Muthama urged the Maa community to join the hustle bandwagon and not accept to be divided along tribal lines.

Senator Wetangula said the Kenya Kwanza administration will provide affordable education from nursery to secondary with the poor getting free education and healthcare.

Senator Kithure Kindiki said the media should be allowed the freedom to work without restrictions including setting up their own tallying centres.

“We want the media to be allowed to work freely and to even relay election results without any restrictions. The media is the watchdog of the planned rigging and that is why they are enacting a law at this last minute to restrict the media from transmitting the results,” he said.

 

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