The Coalition for Reforms and Democracy (CORD) rejected the proposal by President Uhuru Kenyatta to form Joint Committee of Parliament to oversee the talks on matters concerning IEBC.
The move will potentially frustrate President Uhuru’s plan to settle the IEBC issue as it comes just hours after Jubilee nominated eleven members to the team to take part in the dialogue process.
CORD leader Raila Odinga says that even though the President’s gesture is welcome, it does not provide everything the opposition is demanding for, which is to have an out-of-Parliament dialogue process.
The coalition said however that the move was a start in Jubilee’s acceptance of the need for dialogue, but that the effort still has some loopholes.
“We are now saying at least he has recognised the need to discuss IEBC but that alone is not enough,” he told Reuters in a mobile phone text message. “If our concerns are not taken on board we will resume protests.”
He did not specify the concerns but said they would be relayed by mediators to the government.
President Kenyatta decided to name his team after consultations with Speakers of the Senate and the National Assembly and religious leaders at State House, Nairobi, the president said while addressing the nation on Wednesday.
“A Joint Select Committee of both Houses of Parliament will be set up in accordance with Standing Orders of both Houses with keen mandate exclusively limited to the matter of IEBC.”
“We expect that other initiatives by Parliament will harmonize their work within framework of the joint select committee.”
Jubilee had appointed Moses Kuria (Gatundi South), Kipchumba Murkomen (Elgeyo Marakwet), MPs Cecile Mbarire (Runyenjes), Beatrice Elachi (nominated), Senators Kiaritu Murungi (Meru), Fatuma Dullo (nominated), Naomi Shaaban (Taveta), Jimmy Angweyi (Kitutu Chache North) to be part of the IEBC dialogue.
Nonetheless, President Uhuru Kenyatta maintained his stance that the dialogue will be within the confines of the law, insisting he maintains standing orders.
“The dialogue that will be held will be purely about the institution and not about Uhuru discussing with Raila,” the President said.
He furthered stated that there cannot be any other route to solving the IEBC standoff except through the constitution. Hear him:
“It is regrettable that the media is reporting that I have stood down, the truth is that the position I hold today is the same position I held yesterday.”
Mumias MP Jomo Ben Washiali, Eng. Mohammed Mahmoud, Narok Woman Representative Soipan Tuyak were also named in the team. Amani coalition leader Musalia Mudavadi on Wednesday warned against the use of the committee formed to discuss the IEBC stalemate as a prank to buy more time.
Though he welcomed president Uhuru Kenyatta’s proposal, he said the decision came unnecessarily late.
“I hope the final agreed process will put premium on expeditious execution of the limited mandate. Unfortunately limiting the mandate to only IEBC could prejudice and compromise structural reform of the electoral system,” Mudavadi said.