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Kenyatta talks tough on election date, warns judiciary and IEBC

Kenyatta campaigns at a rally today. PHOTO PSCU

Kenyatta urges Kenya courts not to ‘aid opposition to sabotage polls’

KABARTONJO, Baringo County  | PSCU KENYA  |  President Uhuru Kenyatta and Deputy President William Ruto today cautioned Kenya’s judiciary “not to aid the opposition to scuttle the election process.”

The two leaders accused the courts of increasingly getting entangled in what they said are attempts by the opposition to delay the August 8 election.

The President and his deputy also cautioned the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission IEBC  “not  toplay along with schemes by the opposition to throw the election process in disarray.”

They took issue with a recent statement by Chief Justice David Maraga directing the IEBC not to print ballots papers until a case that was in court was decided. The CJ’s statement was quickly followed by a court order asking the IEBC not to proceed with the printing of Presidential ballot papers.

President Kenyatta, who spoke at Kabartonjo, said the orders being issued by the courts appear to be designed to scuttle the election and it was an unacceptable affair.

“You cannot claim independence and use it to interfere with the functioning of the Executive and  other arms of Government,” said Kenyatta, adding that the outcome of the election will be decided by the people and not the courts.

He said every Kenyan has known that elections would be held on August 8 and it would not be acceptable for the Judiciary “to mess up the process.” He cited the example of the order on ballot papers coming weeks before August 8 as the latest of the court orders that have issued in what he said was in favor of the opposition’s attempt to complicate the election and to intimidate the IEBC

“We have respected you for too long but do not take our silence as cowardice. We will not allow our competitors to use the courts to intimidate the IEBC,” said the President.

Kenyatta said “Kenyans will go to the polls on August 8 whether the opposition is ready or not and despite the constant threats of violence from leading opposition figures.”

He assured Kenyans that the elections will be free and fair and that the Government will ensure they take place in a peaceful environment.

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There is no plan to rig, Kenyatta ressures Kenyans

The President said the constant allegations by the opposition that the Jubilee Government wants to rig elections were false and were contradicted by facts.

“This is the first government that is serving a term that is less than five years. If we wanted to rig elections we would have started by demanding that we serve five years but we have accepted that because we want democracy to prevail,” said the President.

The Deputy President said the IEBC should play its Constitutional role to ensure election takes place on August 8.

“Do not conspire with those who are not ready for elections. The IEBC must respect its Constitutional duty to hold elections as stipulated,” said the DP.

The DP also challenged the CJ to tell Kenyans why he publicly gave directions to the IEBC not to print ballot papers even before the Judges handling an election related case made their ruling.

“We are asking the CJ, what does it mean when the CJ gives directions that the IEBC should not print ballot papers?” said the DP.

He said the IEBC, the Judiciary and all politicians should work in tandem to ensure that elections are held as stipulated in the elections.

Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen said the Jubilee Government has always respected the independence of the IEBC but it is increasingly becoming clear that “they are unable to demonstrate the strength to put their foot down against those who want to scuttle the process.”

He also challenged the Chief Justice to tell Kenyans where he stands on the elections and  how much he respects the independence of the Judiciary.

Murkomen said then CJ’s recent statement in Mombasa and the subsequent order by the judges raises queries about the independence of Judges.

He said the number of court cases lodged by the opposition in courts targeting the IEBC and the August 8 election stands at 34.

“We will not allow you to use the Judiciary to sabotage the democratic rights of Kenyans,” he said.

The Senator also dismissed threats of violence by the oppositon, adding that Kenyans will vote overwhelmingly for President Kenyatta and that there will be peace in the country.

The leaders spoke when they addressed a political rally at Kabartonjo at the start of their meet-the-people tour of Baringo County.

They were also joined by Baringo Senator and Kanu leader, Gideon Moi.

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