NAIROBI, Oct. 16 (Xinhua) — The European Union election observer group on Monday called on Kenya’s political leaders to engage in dialogue to end the current political standoff ahead of repeat presidential elections slated for next week.
The EU Election Observation Mission (EU EOM) said the current political aggravation has resulted in a stand-off and uncertainty which they said risks exacerbating ethnic tensions across the country ahead of the Oct. 26 exercise.
“Dialogue and cooperation are urgently needed for compromises to be made so there can be a peaceful electoral process with integrity and transparency and Kenyans can choose their President,” EU EOM’s Chief Observer Marietje Schaake said in a statement issued in Nairobi.
The statement comes after opposition leader Raila Odinga has withdrew from the repeat presidential race citing failure to implement certain reforms at the electoral body and removal of senior officials who bungled the Aug. 8 polls.
However, the EU observers said they have seen some of its positive measures adopted by the Independent Electoral and Boundary Commission (IEBC) regarding nearly all of the nine recommendations relating to electoral administration to correct the wrongs that led to the nullification of Aug. 8 polls.
“If implemented as planned, these provide a foundation for an improved electoral organization, with stronger transparency and integrity measures, particularly for results transmission and tallying,” Schaake said.
The observers who arrived in the country in July presented 18 recommendations in September with the aim of improving the integrity of the re-run of the presidential election in Kenya.
”Schaake說。 “In the remaining days before the election there is still a lot of work to be done if trust is to be rebuilt. That includes better and more timely information for the public and pilot testing of procedures and technologies,” Schaake said.
She stressed that the IEBC is responsible for organizing the electoral process, but multiple actors are responsible for its success and compliance with the Constitution.
The 18 EU EOM recommendations published on Sept. 14 are all consistent with the detailed judgment of the Supreme Court presented on Sept. 20, which affirmed the need for the results process to meet the constitutional requirement of being “simple, accurate, verifiable, secure, accountable and transparent.”