The IEBC has maintained that the next general elections will be held on the second Tuesday of August 2017 as stated in the constitution contrary to the proposed dates by parliament.
The commission has warned that changing the dates can only be through a public vote.
The National Assembly’s justice and legal affairs committee had approved a Bill to amend the constitution in order to move the general election date from August to December but IEBC Chairman Issack Hassan has said that the changes can only be effected through a referendum based on advice from IEBC’s legal department.
“Parliament may need to seek an authoritative court interpretation on the matter to eliminate any doubt since the propped changes alter the term of the president and the constitution makes it clear that any amendment that touches on that matter must be subjected to a public vote,” said Hassan.
SINISTER MOVE OR WHAT?
The Commission for the Implementation of the Constitution (CIC) and other legal experts have questioned the move by MPs to extend the election date to December, arguing that the proposed date will not be practical as the mandate of the IEBC will have expired a month earlier.
If the decision by the parliament was to sail through, the 416 MPs and Senators will pocket more salaries and allowances as their tenure will be extended by at least four months.
In addition, considering that the tenure of the IEBC expires in November, who will oversee the 2017 polls?
According to Ugenya MP, David Ochieng who published the Constitution of Kenya (Amendment) Bill, 2014, proposing for the General Elections date to be changed, the move is to make the election day favourable to Kenyans as the current date unduly disrupts the education calendar, the tourism high season and the aspirations of a section of Kenyans who are not able to get time off to take part at their places of preference.
“The amendment is to ensure that the date of elections reflects the unique circumstances and tradition of Kenya. This is not about extending the life of the current Parliament.” He said.