Juliana Cherera resigns as IEBC Vice Chairperson
Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) Vice Chairperson Juliana Cherera has resigned days after President William Ruto suspended her and three other commissioners.
Cherera is the second commissioner to hand in her resignation after Justus Nyang’aya decided to vacate his post last week Friday.
In a Special Gazette Notice Number 258, President Ruto noted; “The mandate of the tribunal shall be to consider the petition for the removal of (1) Juliana Whonge Cherera, (2) Francis Mathenge Wanderi, (3) Irene Cherop Masit and (4) Justus Abonyo Nyang’aya from office as members of Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) and to inquire into the allegations therein.”
In her letter of resignation, Cherera said that her "stay at the commission is no longer tenable."
"It is with immense woe that today I tender my resignation as commissioner and vice chairperson of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).
Since joining the commission, I have dispensed my duties diligently, meticulously and put a spirited effort in helping the commission deal with corporate governance issues under very difficult circumstances...," she said.
"However my cumulative actions done in good faith are unfortunately misjudged and misinterpreted. After careful consideration of the current events at the commission and with my family and lawyers, I accept that my stay at the commission is no longer tenable and therefore choose to vacate."
She ended by thanking the president for the opportunity "to serve the republic.”
In his resignation on Friday, Nyang’aya termed the decision to step aside as having been motivated by the desire to put the interests of the country above his own, adding that he arrived at the conclusion after praying on it.
“It is with a heavy heart that I tender my resignation as a commissioner of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) effective today,” he wrote.
“In the last few weeks, I have had serious soul searching and being a man of faith, prayed fervently so that I may have the wisdom to make a decision that is in the best interest of the country. We all agree that the best interest of the nation must always supersede our individual interest.”
He added: “I have always endeavored to act in the best interest of the country, although my actions, taken in good faith have been misconstrued. I am grateful that I have been given an opportunity to serve our great nation and intend to continue doing so In other capacities.”
President Ruto had suspended the four Commissioners and formed a tribunal to consider a petition seeking their removal from office.
He said the decision came following a recommendation by the National Assembly that sought to oust the commissioners over their conduct during the August 9, 2022 General Election.
The President went on to appoint High Court Judge Aggrey Muchelule as the chair of the tribunal whose members include Carolyne Kamende Daudi, Linda Gakii Kiome, Mathew Njaramba Nyabena and Col. (Rtd.) Saeed Khamis Saeed.
The joint secretaries for the tribunal will be Kibet Kirui Emmanuel and Irene Tunta Nchoe with Peter Munge Murage being the lead Counsel assisted by Zamzam Abdi Abib.
On Thursday, the National Assembly approved a report by the Justice and Legal Affairs Committee (JLAC) recommending the formation of a tribunal to investigate the conduct of the four commissioners.
JLAC’s Chairperson George Murugara said they had enough grounds to warrant the suspension of the Commissioners.
“The petition by the Republican Liberty Party discloses serious violations of the constitution and other laws as a ground for removal of Mrs Juliana Cherera, Ms Irene Masit, Francis Wanderi and Justus Nyang’aya commissioners of IEBC,” read part of the report by the committee.
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