Kenya: Employment Court Freezes Hiring of New IEBC CEO

Nairobi — The Employment and Labour Relations Court has extended orders stopping the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) from filling the position of its Chief Executive Officer (CEO) which is currently being contested in court.

Justice Bryan Ongayo on Monday granted the request in an application filed by Chama Cha Mawakili (CCM), a lobby group comprising of lawyers.

CCM contended that IEBC was not following the law as it planned to replace Ezra Chiloba who was dismissed on allegations of flouting tendering processes.

The lobby group claimed that despite having assured the public that it shall publish all the names of the applicants for the CEO position, the shortlisted candidates and the reasons for that decision within two weeks, IEBC failed to do so.

According to CCM, the failure was a violation of Article 35 of the Constitution on access to information as well as its own press release dated June 7.

The electoral commission had earlier in June shortlisted ten candidates out of 97 applicants for that position.

They want the IEBC compelled to comply with the law in the recruitment process.

Interviews for the shortlisted candidates were scheduled to commence from on June 24 to 26.

The shortlisted candidates include the current acting CEO Marjan Hussein, Nakitari Okuku Humphrey, Aura Zephania Okeyo, Kariuki Nancy Wanjiku and Kioko Paul Christopher Kimali.

Others are Mabonga Joel Lusweti, Murigi Elishiba Muthoni, Tarus Benjamin Kipchumba, Mwasi Anne Kerubo and Khalid Billow.

CCM argued that failure to comply with the law would result to IEBC having an unsuitable CEO on account of having been selected through a process that is not open, transparent and competitive contrary to the Constitution of Kenya, 2010, the IEBC Act as well as the Commission's Human Resource (HR) Recruitment Policy.

The Commission and the Attorney General have now been given two weeks within which they are required to file their responses to the application.

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