Church says confident IEBC will conduct a free, fair poll

Church says confident IEBC will conduct a free, fair poll

Church leaders have expressed confidence in the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) and its ability to hold free and fair elections in 2017.

Speaking after a meeting with IEBC commissioners, the leaders under the auspices of National Council of Churches of Kenya (NCCK) stated that they do not support CORD’s anti-IEBC protests saying the warring factions should seek alternative ways of solving the issues.

“We have heard from IEBC and we are satisfied with their level of preparedness for the 2017 elections,” said NCCK Secretary General Rev. Canon Karanja.

IEBC chair Issack Hassan, on his part, said the commission is ready to dialogue with CORD over the measures they have taken to ensure the 2017 General Election is held in a free and fair environment adding that they would not be forced into resignation by CORD.

While condemning the Monday protests which have in the past four weeks paralysed businesses in parts of Nairobi’s Central Business District (CBD), Hassan urged CORD to seek alternative conflict resolution mechanism that would not compromise the country’s peace and stability.

The meeting between the Church leaders and IEBC came just a day after the leaders met CORD leaders in an attempt to find resolutions to the stand-off over the commission’s tenure.

In a press briefing after the meeting, CORD leader Raila Odinga stated that they would not back down from their push to have the commissioners vacate office saying their protests held every Monday are in the best interest of Kenyans.

CORD’s third march on Monday was thwarted, with similar execution to the other two, with police lobbying teargas to opposition supporters to disperse them.

Other Church leaders present include Eldoret Archbishop Martin Kivuva Musondi, Mombasa’s Anglican Church of Kenya Bishop Julius Kalu, Eldoret Catholic Diocese Bishop Cornelius Korir and Bishop of Catholic Diocese of Kakamega Joseph Obanyi.