3 Kenyan election commissioners resign

By Andrew Wasike and Magdalene Mukami

NAIROBI, Kenya (AA) – Three top commissioners from Kenya’s electoral body — including the vice chair — resigned on Monday, citing their lack of faith in the board’s current chair in the wake of tumultuous elections in the East African country.

In a statement, the commissioners said that, under Chairman Wafula Chebukati, “the commission boardroom has become a venue for peddling misinformation, grounds for brewing mistrust, and a space for scrambling for and chasing individual glory and credit.”

The commissioners last year refused to step down amid opposition calls on them to resign, followed by protests to force their resignation, leading to scores of deaths.

The commissioners who stepped down today said that they still believe Kenya’s elections last year were done properly.

Last September, Kenya’s Supreme Court annulled the Aug. 8 presidential reelection of Uhuru Kenyatta and ordered a do-over.

Just before the Oct. 30 re-run elections, and after an electoral commissioner fled Kenya for the U.S., saying she feared for her life, Chebukati said he could not guarantee the polls would meet standards of fairness.

Kenyatta won reelection after the main opponent dropped out of the race, saying electoral officials failed to make necessary reforms.