SID's Presentation to the Join Parliamentary Select Committee on Matters IEBC

Society for International Development Presentation

by invitation before the Joint Parliamentary Select Committee on

matters relating to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries

Commission (IEBC)

19th July 2016

Context

The credibility of the electoral management body; Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC). has been a subject of divisive national debate since the 2013 General Elections. This national debate has reached a critical point and now threatens the viability of a credible, professional and peaceful electoral process.

The desired outcome of the Joint Parliamentary Select Committee must be an electoral management body that enjoys confidence of all stakeholders and the implementation of five substantive administrative reforms prior to the General

Elections in 2017.

  1. Over-haul and re-constituting of the IEBC
  2. One single publicly verifiable voter register
  3. Public engagement and confidence building strategies
  4. Agreement on the use of the full spectrum of technological requirements in administration of elections including voter registration, voter identification and transmission
  5. Monitoring and enforcement of party nomination processes
  6. Monitoring and enforcement of election campaign financing laws
  7. Agreement on the storage of electoral materials

Over-haul and re-constituting of the IEBC

  1. It is our view that the current commission is irredeemable and must be disbanded based on a negotiated settlement with the current Commissioners. The cost of this will be far less costly than a Tribunal based process.
  2. New Commissioners should be constituted as a governance and oversight body of 5 or 7 Commissioners identified on the basis of their integrity, non-party partisanship and elections and institutional management experience. They should not be proposed on the basis of the party affiliation but must reflect national character and the broader public interest.
  3. Greater management independence and resources should be channelled to the Secretariat.

One single publicly verifiable voter register

  1. The voters register remains a matter of concern. The polling station, constituency, county, diaspora voter register are all components of one principal register
  2. We further propose that the register should be publicly available for scrutiny by all

stakeholders, including civic organisations and voters.

Voter engagement and confidence building strategies

  1. The spiralling confidence of voters requires an open deliberative process around the key moments of the Strategic Plan to ensure that voter confidence is deepened and voter registration is a continuous process.

Agreement on the use of the full spectrum of technological requirements in administration of elections including voter registration, voter identification and results transmission

  1. All parties, the Multi-Faith Dialogue and specialist civic organisations must reach agreement on the proposed method of registration, identification and transmission.

Monitoring and enforcement of party nomination processes

  1. Despite a legal framework in place, most of the parties have failed to date to institute credible internal party elections to ensure solid nominations.
  2. Given the zoning of the country in terms of party blocs, it would be important to set capacity-building strategies, clear timelines and compliance monitoring for these processes that are often called “the real election” with the General Elections being the coronation.
  3. Synergy between the Registrar of Political Parties and the IEBC is key to enforcing our new laws. A key step forward would be the confirming of the Registrar who has been serving in an acting capacity for several years in the next thirty days.
  4. Community fora suggest that we require clearer communication channels and follow up for electoral related abuses. If we build the trust in IEBC, citizens will create huge support base for its work

Monitoring and enforcement of election campaign financing laws

  1. Recent voter registration drives suggest a very worrying trend of open vote buying, voter-scaring and vote transfer. This is one of the greatest threats to the sovereignty of the Kenyan people.
  2. We would support restrictions to limit the period for voter transferring.

Agreement on the storage of electoral materials

  1. A concern identified post-2013 was the archiving and storage of electoral related materials to ensure that post elections disputes are handled without any loss of evidence.

Download this Presentation HERE