A Collaboration with the University of Pittsburgh

Kenya moves to replace controversial electoral commission

[JURIST] The Kenyan government on Friday published a bill calling for a constitutional amendment allowing the replacement of the controversial Electoral Commission of Kenya [official website] which oversaw the re-election of President Mwai Kibaki [official profile] in December 2007, leading to massive demonstrations and more than 1,000 deaths. Justice Minister Martha Karua said the country's parliament could pass the bill within a week [AFP report], laying the groundwork for an interim body of five people to replace the current 22-member commission. The commission has called the claim unconstitutional [Afrik.com report] and is seeking a court order to block such a change. Some 600 employees of the commission who stand to lose their jobs are protesting [Standard report] the move, blaming the 22 commissioners and other higher-ranking officials for problems in the agency.

Kenyan protesters alleged fraud and vote-rigging [JURIST report] after Kibaki prevailed despite polls that placed rival candidate Raila Odinga in the lead. In March, Kibaki established a panel [JURIST report] to investigate the violence that followed the election. Human Rights Watch concluded the violence was planned carefully [JURIST report] by leaders on both sides. That commission urged the creation [JURIST report] of an international tribunal to try suspected perpetrators of the violence.

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.