September 19, 2017

High court ruling on IEBC’s elections management system

The High Court has quashed a petition filed by human rights activists Maina Kiai, Khelef Khalifa and Tirop Kitur challenging the manner in which the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) acquired the Kenya Integrated Elections Management System (KIEMS) devices.

According to the petitioners, IEBC failed to meet standards set in law which include simplicity, accuracy, security, accountability and transparency of election technology.

Justice John Mativo pointed out that IEBC’s technical committee consulted with relevant authorities to ensure the devices were procured in conformity with relevant laws.

“In the absence of cogent evidence to the contrary, and considering the nature of the matter, logistical constraints and time constraints, I find IEBC has demonstrated that there was some form of public participation sufficient to satisfy the requirements of public participation,” Justice Mativo ruled on Wednesday (19/07/17).

“IEBC Chief Executive Officer Ezra Chiloba proved beyond reasonable doubt in an affidavit filed on June 21 that a technical committee set up by the Commission bringing together representatives of State and non-State professional bodies addressed pertinent issues touching on specification of the KIEMS gadgets and even public participation,” he added.

Chiloba’s affidavit indicated that IEBC met the necessary requirements that an integrated electronic system needs to be in place eight months to the elections, which was later amended in December 2016, the new laws reducing the period to four months.

The affidavit noted that Chiloba also submitted that a committee appointed on April 28 conducted an inspection of the KIEMS kits and subsequently issued a certificate of compliance on May 8.

The Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) is also said to have inspected power banks, mobile batteries chargers and tablets to satisfy their compliance to standards.

The fate of the presidential ballots awaits the Appeal Court’s ruling tomorrow after Chebukati’s team challenged the High Court ruling that cancelled a tender awarded to the Dubai based Al Ghurair.

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