Top Stories / 2017 Elections
Tuesday, 19 Sep 2017 16:32 EAT
The embattled chairman of the Independent and Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) Wafula Chebukati has ordered the immediate suspension of the commission’s ICT director James Muhati and two officers from the ICT department who illegally used the chairman's log-in credentials to effect changes on the results transmission system without the chairman's knowledge during the Supreme Court-nullified August 8 elections.
In a new memo apparently leaked to help pile public pressure on the Commission’s CEO Ezra Chiloba, who the opposition has identified as the mastermind of a long-drawn effort to rig the annulled election, Chebukati also raises several questions about the CEO's contradictory information to the public and the chairman himself.
Snapshots of the memo.
Chebukati has further held that the secretariat officials identified (Chiloba, Muhati, Paul Mugo - ICT coordinator - and and Boniface Wamae - ICT officer) have a case to answer over the bungled presidential election just two days before the Supreme delivers full judgment of the case tomorrow.
The memo dated September 18 directs Chiloba to immediate take steps to suspend the three officers in accordance with the commission's human resource management policy and facilitate full and proper investigations into their management of the commission's IT systems before, during and after the nullified election.
Chebukati demands to be told under whose authority did the two ICT officers accrue super user rights to use his account in respect of the presidential elections. “Why and under whose authority did the officers insist on deleting the unclear or corrupt Forms instead of archiving the same? Are there any such unclear and corrupt forms available?” he further wants an explanation from Chiloba.
Contrary to what Chiloba claims in reply to a former memo from the chairman, Chebukati holds that he never attended any briefings by the ICT/IEBC Team at Bomas of Kenya on 7 August, 2017, a day before the August 8, polls ‘or at all on the Chairperson/NROs account’.
The six-page memo, in which the chairman is reacting to Chiloba’s response to the earlier one whose contents were published in this website, brings a new twist to the behind the scenes happenings during the August 8, elections with a confirmation of a parallel plenary which the CEO needs to explain.
“I am not privy to any Plenary minutes that confirm only Form 34As were to be pre-printed with candidates’ names and security features supplied by M/S Al Ghuriar”, poses Chebukati in the memo demanding more explanation from Chiloba. The Plenary is the main decision-making organ of IEBC.
The Chairman says, “You state that there were no notable failures that significantly impaired the required processes. These required processes being printing and scanning.
"Whereas I am advised that in a TV interview on 13 September with NTV's Larry Madowo you stated that there were 'printing failures' in constituencies that supposedly ended up 'destroying the forms'".
The chairman says Chiloba "seem to be alluding to the fact that network challenges led to text transmission without the image. This action was in direct contradiction to the plenary resolution that if there was no network connectivity to contemporaneously send both text and image results. The Kenya Integrated Elections Management System (KIEMS) device would securely store the image and automatically transmit the same via satellite phone devices’.
The chairman had early this month written to Chiloba demanding tough answers on what went wrong with the August 8 presidential election. A leaked memo from the chair demanded a raft of explanations, including why the chair's password was used to access the results transmission system.