Opposition leaders have asked the electoral commission to postpone the coming election due to poor preparations.
NASA leader Raila Odinga, who spoke in Trans Nzoia County on Sunday, said his group would not participate in an election whose outcome is pre-determined, reports the Standard Newspaper.
“The IEBC chairman has already admitted he cannot guarantee free, fair, and credible elections. We also know the commission is ill-prepared to uphold the will of the people. That is why we are urging Mr Wafula Chebukati to be bold enough and do the right thing – postpone the election,” Raila told thousands of supporters.
The Opposition chief, who was flanked by his NASA co-principals Musalia Mudavadi and Moses Wetang’ula during a rally at Kiminini Township, said: “Chebukati should tell Kenyans the truth – that the election will only be a cosmetic exercise. He should be honest and patriotic enough to tell Kenyans the truth. What they are planning to do on Thursday is not an election.
“The electoral commission should put off the controversial election for the sake of peace in our country. We are also here to tell our supporters we are not going to participate in the October 26 election. There will be no election because the outcome has been pre-determined.”
Raila filed a petition that saw the Supreme Court nullify President Uhuru Kenyatta’s victory on September 1 after he had been declared the winner following the August 8 General Election.
Consequently, the judges ordered the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) to organise fresh presidential elections. The IEBC settled on October 26 as the date for the repeat elections.
However, preparations for the election have been marred by controversy over NASA’s push for reforms at the electoral commission. Major setback IEBC suffered a major setback last week after Commissioner Roselyne Akombe, resigned citing frustrations.
She said the commission could not deliver a credible election as currently constituted and accused her former colleagues of deciding issues, not on the basis of merit but partisan interests.
Raila had also demanded the removal of officials accused of bungling the last election, a demand IEBC has opposed, the same position taken by President Kenyatta and leaders of his Jubilee Party.
President Kenyatta has assured those who are willing to vote of adequate security amid fears of violence.
Jubilee has maintained that the elections will go on as planned despite the withdrawal of NASA. The Opposition has urged its supporters to go out and protest on Election Day.
And on Sunday, Raila accused Chebukati and his team of refusing to allow reforms that would have guaranteed free and fair elections.
“We are asking Uhuru and Ruto to stop intimidating Kenyans. The struggle for creditable elections is not for the interest of Raila but Kenyans,” said Odinga.
Mudavadi said NASA would not take part in an election conducted by the same IEBC that bungled the August 8 showpiece. “Kenyans are not going to participate in an election presided over by those who messed up the August elections,” said Mudavadi.
Wetang’ula said postponing the election would save the country from bad leadership. “We are asking Chebukati to call off the election to save the country because we know it will not be free and fair,” the Ford Kenya leader said.