Now pro­fes­sion­als want role in IEBC talks

Chair­man says they have played a crit­i­cal role in con­sti­tu­tional re­view process and thus, should par­tic­i­pate in the di­a­logue

The Star (Kenya) - - News - GILBERT KOECH @KoechJu­nior_1

The As­so­ci­a­tion of Pro­fes­sional So­ci­eties in East Africa wants to be in­volved in the elec­toral re­forms ne­go­ti­a­tions.

Chair­man Steven Oundo yes­ter­day said pro­fes­sion­als have in the past played a crit­i­cal role, par­tic­u­larly in the con­sti­tu­tional re­view process, and as such they have a vi­tal role to play in the IEBC re­form process.

“Due to the role that pro­fes­sion­als play in all as­pects of na­tion-build­ing, it is our hum­ble re­quest that Apsea, as the joint fo­rum and um­brella body of pro­fes­sional so­ci­eties from var­i­ous dis­ci­plines, be in­volved in the re­con­sti­tu­tion of the IEBC in or­der to en­sure pro­fes­sion­al­ism,” Oundo said in a state­ment.

Apsea brings to­gether pro­fes­sional as­so­ci­a­tions dif­fer­ent dis­ci­plines.

Oundo, who was flanked by 30 pro­fes­sion­als, said the constitution, the supreme law that binds all cit­i­zens and state agen­cies, must be fol­lowed when re­mov­ing the em­bat­tled com­mis­sion­ers.

“For the greater good of the coun­try, we ap­peal for con­tin­ued peace and speedy di­a­logue from a cross-sec­tion of in­sti­tu­tions — state or­gans, pro­fes­sion­als, churches and civil so­ci­ety,” he said.

Oudo ad­dressed the me­dia at 30 from Pro­fes­sional Cen­tre, Nairobi.

Cord co-prin­ci­pals Raila Odinga, Moses We­tang’ula and Kalonzo Musyoka say the IEBC bosses must leave of­fice if the next gen­eral elec­tion is to be free,fair and trans­par­ent.

Some of the com­mis­sion­ers have said they are will­ing to re­sign.

Oundo said en­gag­ing of pro­fes­sion­als in ne­go­ti­a­tions over re­forms is im­por­tant.

On whether there is enough time to re­form the com­mis­sion be­fore the next elec­tions, the pro­fes­sion­als said there is need to speed up re­forms to avoid push­ing back the polls, which is only pos­si­ble through a con­sti­tu­tional am­mend­mentsay­ing con­duct­ing ref­er­en­dum to change the constitution is far-fetched.

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