The police deployed to guard IEBC’s offices disperse Opposition leaders with tear gas to prevent them from gaining access into offices of the commissioners whom they planned to kick out of their offices.
The opposition leaders who took part in the protest included chief Raila Odinga, Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka and Senators Moses Wetang’ula (Bungoma), James Orengo (Siaya) and Anyang’ Nyong’o (Kisumu). One of the protesters tried to jump over the gates before police started dispelling them with tear gas.
Prior to the agitation which saw the police using tear gas on the leaders of the opposition coalition, Raila accused the Jubilee government and the IEBC of fighting against reforms that would produce a democratic electoral system. The Cord leader mentioned that the Opposition is pushing for some changes that will represent the mind of members of the public.
National Assembly Majority leader Aden Duale described Cord protest as a constitutional coup, as the electoral body cannot be dissolved by agitation in their various offices. Duale noted that the there are protocols that would have been followed if the opposition had wanted the commission disbanded rather than being violent.
He referenced Article 251 of the constitution, saying that the opposition needs to consult the article in their bid to give the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission the boot.
Cord announced that it will forcefully eject the commissioners but the IEBC said it was ready to welcome the party as they cannot be trifled with. The commission said it would engage every Kenyan over their concerns.
The party insisted that it was better to chase the commissioners out of their offices, and on that account Police were deployed to guard Anniversary Towers in Nairobi where the IEBC’s offices are. They were given marching orders to bundle off anybody who arrives at the venue to protest.
Cord said the commission is no longer qualified to handle the elections, as their reputation has become questionable overtime. The party referenced the rejection of its Okoa Kenya initiative for failing to meet the one million constitutional threshold for signatures.
Cord submitted booklets containing 1.4 million signatures in October 2015 but only 891,598 were found to be valid. Raila also accused IEBC of rigging the last election in favour of president Uhuru. IEBC said it expects Cord and all citizens to uphold the rule of law like everyone else, appealing to the political players to stop attempting to get it sidetracked.
Meanwhile CORD had responded saying the coalition will not look for court’s intervention as it spoke up against the credibility of IEBC conducting the next elections.
Speaking, Junet Mohammed cautioned that Cord leaders will contest the result if Jubilee coalition wins the 2017 presidential election and it will do that by going to the streets.
According to the Suna East MP:
“Failure by the Jubilee administration to disband it and if President Uhuru Kenyatta and DP William Ruto win the next election…the people in the Opposition will take their anger to the streets,”.