NASA MPs storm out of Parliament in protest of proposed election laws
Opposition MPs on Thursday walked out of Parliament protesting an attempt by Jubilee to use its numerical numbers to pass a Bill seeking to amend the IEBC Act, the Elections Act and the Elections Offences Act by giving manually transmitted results more clout than the electronically transmitted ones.
The bill states that where there is an inconsistency between the electronically transmitted and manually transmitted results, the manually transmitted shall prevail.
IEBC, shall also, facilitate public information to establish a mechanism for the live streaming of results as announced at a polling station.
“The results so streamed shall be for purposes of public information only and shall not be the basis for a declaration by the commission,” the Bill reads in part.
It also seeks to streamline IEBC’s operations in case the chairperson quits or cannot exercise their mandate.
The Bill says the vice-chair should take over and if this is not possible, then the other five members should elect a chairperson from among themselves.
According to the Bill, the IEBC chair is the Returning Officer of the presidential election and is the only one mandated to declare results. In addition, decisions of IEBC can now be made by half the number of the existing commissioners as long as the quorum is three.
Currently, at least five members of the IEBC must be involved in making a decision. The Bill is sponsored by Baringo North MP William Cheptumo. It adds that the commission may put in place a complementary mechanism for identification of voters that is simple, accurate, verifiable, secure accountable and transparent.
The Bill seeks to amend section 83 of the Election Act 2011 by renumbering the existing provisions as subsections.
It proposes to delete “…the word ‘or’ appearing immediately before the words ‘that the noncompliance’ in the renumbered subsection (1) and substituting therefore the word ‘and’.”
Inserting the following new subsections immediately after the renumbered subsections (1).
“(2) pursuant to section 72 of the interpretation and general provisions act, a form prescribed by this act of the regulations made thereunder shall not be void by reason of a deviation is not calculated to mislead.”
It says when a presidential election is invalidated by the Supreme Court, the IEBC shall publish a notice in the gazette.
This will be done within seven days from the determination of the court. The Bill says the electoral commission shall indicate that the presidential election has been invalidated and no candidate has been elected as president.
The poll agency shall also announce the date for fresh election.
IEBC shall also publish the names and political parties of the candidates to participate in the fresh election.
The candidates to participate in the fresh election shall be determined by the nature of the petition that invalidates the original election.
“Where the petition challenging the election was filed by the runner up, candidates for the fresh election shall be confined to the petitioner and the president-elect whose election was annulled,” the Bill reads.
Where the petition was filed by more than one candidate who had participated in the original election, the petitioning candidates and the president-elect may participate in the fresh elections.
“Where the petition was filed by a person who were not candidates in the original election, then each of the candidates in the original election may participate to the fresh elections,” it reads.
The Bill also notes that no other candidate other than those envisaged in the above sections shall be eligible to participate in fresh elections.
Jubilee is expected to marshal its MPs to push for amendments to sections of the Election Laws over the annulment of the presidential poll.
Jubilee, which enjoys a majority in the Senate and the National Assembly, wants to make it mandatory for a petitioner to prove to the Supreme Court that violations of the constitution or any electoral law alter the presidential outcome, as declared by the IEBC.