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Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Kriegler Reservations





“The Kriegler Commission must faithfully fulfil its mandate”

Nairobi, September 16, 2008 : Kenyans await the imminent release of the Independent Review of the Elections Commission (IREC) report to His Excellency the President as well as to His Excellency Kofi Annan, the chair of the African Panel of Eminent African Personalities that crafted the National Accord.

However, that wait is tinged with reservations. Reservations informed by the long and disappointing experiences with commissions of inquiry which never fulfilled their mandates or whose recommendations were never implemented. In addition the conducting of the inquiry and the public pronouncements of its chairman, Justice Johann Kriegler have fuelled public scepticism about the likely quality and impact of findings and recommendations emerging from this Commission of Inquiry. In all fairness, Kenyans must wait and hear what Justice Kriegler and his colleagues have to say. But we wait in the consciousness of the historical significance of this report and of the heavy negative consequences that could attend an insufficient fulfilment of IREC’s mandate.

The 2007 General Election in Kenya was, arguably, the most closely contested ever. The consequences of that election nearly tore the country apart.

Many Kenyans quickly came together upon the eruption of violence to seek peace. One such group stressed that achieving peace alone would not be sustainable without the telling of Truth and the search for Justice. This is how a group of civil society organizations and individuals evolved into the Kenyans for Peace with Truth and Justice (KPTJ). We are joined on our concerns by the National Civil Society Congress (NCSC).

We still do seek truth, which we believe will only return Kenya to durable stability and peace if it is told and known. Electoral truth, truth on the processes, voting and tallying truth, as well as the truth of the roles played by individuals as well as institutions must be told.

KPTJ and NCSC also seek justice for the people of Kenya. Electoral justice will, in our view, be the foundation of growth in democracy and freedom. This justice must include the final determination of what exactly happened to the ballot and who may have won the election insofar as this can credibly be ascertained.

We, too, seek justice for the people that were violently deprived of their lives, livelihoods and property. We hope that the Internally Displaced Persons shall have their share of justice through the report of the Commission on Post-Election Violence (CIPEV). We deplore the continuing suffering of the IDPs and condemn the inadequate attention which is being paid to finding speedy and sustainable resolution of their plight.

In order to heal itself, Kenya accepted a grand coalition government, which resulted from the Kofi Annan led mediation process. In addition, the abovementioned commissions, IREC and CIPEV, were set up to deal with outstanding issues.

The mandate of the Independent Review Commission includes the investigation of ALL aspects of the 2007 presidential elections and the making of findings and recommendations to improve the electoral process.

We do expect that IREC shall provide a faithful report that will, among other things, do the following:

  • Substantively and conclusively note the accountability function of the Electoral Commission of Kenya. This will include clear findings on what the ECK did wrong, who did wrong, what ECK failed to do right, what it could have done better and its responsibility, and that of individual officials, for the aftermath of the elections.
  • The Commission should clearly identify the culpable parties for the electoral fiasco that nearly brought the country to its knees. This should include specific findings on individuals, political parties, candidates, state agencies, security agencies and any other parties. We expect that IREC will indeed proffer an answer as to what exactly went wrong with the elections and who had the greatest responsibility for the disaster that happened to Kenya. We seriously expect that the Independent Review Commission will not pass the buck but precisely locate it.
  • The IREC will have to be acutely aware that, in the event Kenyans feel that the commission has not fully and effectively discharged its mandate, it will have endorsed impunity and diminished faith in elections as an essential tool for democracy. This will risk being considered a perpetuation of the betrayal that led to the loss of lives and property following the elections.

Whereas we are hopeful that the IREC will acquit itself in respect to the foregoing, we are aware that the commission faces some key challenges. These include:

  • The Commission’s apparent narrow interpretation of its mandate to exclude the possibility of credibly identifying who may have won the presidential election. We have stressed in all our public statements that this may be extremely difficult, if not impossible, if the records have been extensively manipulated. However any professional and conscientious forensic audit of the documentation should at least provide guidance on what really happened and who was culpable. Judge Kriegler’s apparent public fudging on this mandate is in contrast to the Kenya National Dialogue and Reconciliation agreement, which said that the IREC “would be mandated to investigate all aspects of the 2007 General Election”. One of IREC’s terms of reference enjoin it to “investigate vote counting and tallying with special attention to the presidential poll to assess the integrity of the results”.
  • The Commission’s highly questionable definition of the primary stakeholders of the inquiry process to be political parties, the ECK and the government.
  • Since the IREC’s investigation was based on possible mischief by the political actors and the ECK their above-mentioned privileging by the commission and the reluctance to allow civil society to play a more active role in the proceedings of the inquiry was regrettable since IREC’s independence could come into question, and thus reduce the credibility of its report.
  • In contrast, and without prejudice as to its eventual findings and recommendations, the Commission of Inquiry into Post-Election Violence (CIPEV) under Justice Waki has worked well with civil society. We believe that this has had a positive impact on some of the testimony received and the outreach that CIPEV could attain.

In conclusion, the KPTJ and NCSC fully expect the Commission to be faithful and forthright to its mandate and to the people of Kenya so as to safeguard democracy and the fidelity of the electoral system and responsibly use the considerable public resources allocated to it.

We also urge the President to immediately publish the report to its true principals, the Kenyan people, so that Kenyans can evaluate it, respond, and take the necessary steps to heal and reconstruct their nation.

The same demand will be made over the CIPEV headed by Justice Waki, which is also soon completing its report.


Gladwell Otieno

Kenyans for Peace with Truth and Justice

Njeri Kabeberi

National Civil Society Congress


Anonymous said...

My goodness, Chris you are still alive?! Welcome back! We missed you dearly!

Hope you are back for good!!

Lots of Love
Kumekucha blogger

Chris said...

What a wonderful welcome back!!!!!

Thanx a million Anon @7:42

I am humbled and already blushing.

Let us just say I was "re-charging my batteries" amongst other things and hopefully the stories will start flocking fast and thick very soon.


Phil said...


How do Gladwell Otieno and Njeri Kabeberi have reservations, while the report is yet to be publicized?

Its an open secret the civil society were never friends of the IREC and Justice Kriegler in particular.

Let them give us a break. We need to review the report, look at the recommendations and then see which ones to implement, if not all.

Besides, we do not want to preempt the forthcoming constitutional amendments, do we?

In the meantime, Chris, welcome back and next time, please do inform us when you are taking a sabbatical leave.

Anonymous said...

Kriegler report

The just released report,going by the findings as reported in the papers raises serious issues
-It seems that those in power want to "move on" and continue sharing the spoils of power.They have chosen the easier way out.
This will seriously undermine the way Kenyans will take it. In simple terms, the rulers are not in touch with the real owners of these "findings"
I am afraid that the existence of the Grand Coalition Government is at stake,because, Kenyans could easily decide to form their own conclusion, which would not be in line with those of the rulers
-why would Kofi Annan receive the report in Nairobi?-is the international community worried that the report is unlikely to be implemented/taken seriously by the Kenyans? There is something fishy in all this
-RAO talks of Kenyans as owners of the report.Kriegler condemns power-sharing. Is the coalition in the sunset days? Who is against power sharing? supported by this report,Muthaura may answer that!
-unlike before and for other commissions, Kibaki has AGREED to release the report in a few days.Is it that the report was done "as agreed with the commissioners and there is nothing to worry about"
-Why is the issue of IDPs ignored/not given any prominency?

I could be negative and see nothing implementable in this report.Kenyans have always known that the ECK is not fit for purpose. The sittings were therefore not necessary. it was a waste of Public funds.

Has the Grand Coalition government shown any tagible signs of improving the lives of Kenyans,Has corruption abated etc.

Anonymous said...

hey chris

good to have you back

krieglers public outburst a few weeks back was rather telling. it would be interesting to see if indeed the commission will deviate from that line of thought.

the article mentions forensic audit, but so far i've not heard of any such exercise and everything heard so far has been based on public interrogation and collecting views from the various players.

like phil says lets wait for the outcome. hopefully the report will not be tampered with and made public and wil capture all the events around this regrettable period


Anonymous said...

What if Kriegler as an independent observer(he's of sound mind and an acclaimed judge) found out that majority of kenyans had been brainwashed by the wily molasses fox to believe its only Kibaki who could rig the elections while many right and sober thinking Kenyans can reasons for themselves and question the purported 100 per cent turn outs in ODM strongholds.Those guilty of anything perpetually live in fear.Could this be what many odmites know but fear will come out?Chris could you please add an 'unmasking scroundrels' label here!

Anonymous said...

I have asked here before and will do so again,what role did the calls for Majimbo by the odm pentagon play in the death and evictions that followed the the post election violence.Phil,Chris,Taabu,Sam Okello all want us to believe the violence was spontaneous against a perceived ODM win yet if they are to be reasonable will agree as Kriegler rightly pointed out that the situation was charged due to politicians utterances months to the election.Come 2012 and the majimbo debate will be restarted,Kenya will go into civil war and then with your small brains you will start debating who wronged who.

Vikii said...

I think our focus should be on the recommendations these commissions put forward and not necessarily who won the elections. They may be trully interested and even committed to establishing that, but the truth is that with so many documents apparently missing, with so much water under the bridge, that will be a tall order.

Such a close election like last year's could have been decided by one of the seemingly insignificant ovrersights right before, during or right after the election process. The government party, the PNU could be accused of rigging the elections even before the actual voting began. The use of the provincial administration and other government resources for partisan campaigns is a form of rigging. The ODM is as well guilty of pre-vote rigging because it unleashed its morons on everyone who had a divergent viewpoint about the whole thing. Using violence to intimidate opponents in Lang'ata, Nyanza and Western Kenya is rigging because it creates an uneven playing field and denies patriotic Kenyans an opportunity to express their political opinions both in public rallies and in some instances at the polling booth (opponent party agents were expelled).
Now,how will Kriegler determine the extent of the roles these shenanigans played in the election fiasco?

Then there is the doctoring at the KICC which is the item of obsession. Does anybody have the original form 16A (or whatever is the name). How then would Kriegler verify the allegations by both parties against this form if it is missing?

How about those regions that were recording 95% voter turn out? Some polling stations recorded 100% turn out, come on, didnt anyone fall sick, die, get tied up with something else, fail to travel or something? While only a fool would believe that, it is really hard for the Kriegler commission to ascertain the level of cheating in such cases.

What that means is that there were widespread irregularities by both sides and there is no way of telling who got the net advantage. That is why we should be primarily interested in knowing what the best way to avoid a repeat would be. How do we solve the land problem (if at all it was ever a problem), how do we educate primitive communities that turn against their neighbours unprovoked? This should be our interest.

Those fellows so keen to embrace the pre emptive doctrine that characterizes our ways, please stop. Judge Kriegler did not absolve anybody of blame. He only reprimanded people against making false accusations. According to him, whatever happened at the KICC was the culmination of a flawed process. That is why he talked about the process being "irretrivably polluted". We should be focussing on how to restore integrity in the process not merely being told who won that election because, quite frankly, nobody would ever know that.

Shiko-Msa said...

Welcome back Chris.

b-carotene said...

Gladwell Otieno, Njeri Kabeberi and their mediocre cohorts of Kenya's 'civil society' are just another bunch of self-seeking slime bugs, not too different from the politicians they pretend to keep in check. Why preempt a report that will be released SOON? Why make demands of it now? Bure kabisa!

Rafiki said...

Anyone with a copy of the full report?

Kwale said...

I am just tired and fed up with these fanatics.
I hope Kriegler report will settle the matter once and for all, and then we all move on. At the moment we can't even have a constructive discussion here without these nauseating dickheads.

Vikii said...

Kwale vipi? Don't lose hope on the motherland, bro. I know damn well what you are talking about but you gotta take take it easy.

b-carotene said...

Anon @9:38 am. Riiiight on!
I really hope the Kriegler report considers the important point you raise in a comprehensive way. We know what these phoney ODM fanatics and murderers mean by majimbo. That should be dealt with summarily,forthwith and whatever strong language can be brought to bear.

Anonymous said...

anon8:55 AM

Your Alzheimer brained filled godfather golfer rigged elections and Kriegler has nothing to report to Kenyan- though he is lucky to have been paid by kibaki using kenyan tax payers money- ushenzi tupu

Anonymous said...

9:38 AM

Now now! you really think Kenyan are fools?? PNU filled lorries and buses filled with mungiki gang members a week before elections and when questioned kibaki and his PNU cronies claimed these were police being ferried to keep peace!ha!!ha!! what a laugh little did we know that these are the same people send to burn their own tribesmen in Eldoret church to remove attention to Kibaki's rigging- shenzi nyinyi- we all know the truth- you will pay for killing my relatives in Naivasha and Nakuru jinga wewe.... ati you want to lay blame elsewhere- it won't wash Kriegler your paid pimp can write all the reports that he wants- but he is not 6ft under.. unless Kibaki accepts responsibility for ordering innocent kenyans to be shot dead by police and army!!!if that is not in the Kriegler report then the report should be flushed in the toilet period!!!not worth it.

Anonymous said...

Kwale Mungiki shiate 12:35 PM

I guess your Alzheimer thieving thug Kibaki who rigged elections in broad daylight while he went on a killing spree will not be mentioned in the Kriegler report for being the cause of the deaths of thousands of kenyans by the giving the police orders shoot to kill!! Kriegler report is a mock to Kenyans and unless Kibaki is the star feature in it then it is bogus! Kwale wewe shenzi sana keep worshiping your Kibaki devil worshiper mpumbavu mavi ya kikuyu as he calls himself.

Anonymous said...

anon1:51 PM
Opps- I guess your twisted forked brown tongue meant the PNU incest filled murderers- if they can sleep with their own daughters and sons?? what is beheading and burning some in the Eldoret church?? se they call them pheasants or IDP's just look where the rest are? do these PNU Kibaki and his cronies care?? so long as he kabaki can fart in the statehouse bed - the rest of his tribesmen especially the poor ones can burn in hell - i hear Kibaki and his cronies from central province find them an Embarrassment no wonder it was easy for them to send their mungiki gang to burn them in Eldoret church - Kibaki will go down in the history of Kenya as the worst murderer even worse than IDD Amin f-----k the Kriegler paid for report... Kenyans from other parts of country except for central province have enough intelligence to see what happened and they will correct it in due course - watch and see central lesotho shiate.. your time is done.

Kimi Raikkonen said...

It is naive and stupid to keep harping on the "who won the elections?" mantra when logic says that it is impossible to establish who did. Even if Kriegler said that either Kibaki or Raila won, not everybody would believe it and supporters of either camp would find very plausible reasons to show otherwise.
Otieno and Kabeberi's ill-thought out and childish wish list therefore only confirms the low capacity of Kenyan NGO's to apply professionalism in their judgement and highlights their astonishing naivete. These are the same idiots who claimed ethnic cleansing never took place in the RV only to belatedly admit it 3 months later, yet they still want their opinions to be heard and taken seriously. What a bunch of shameless, pathetic morons.

Anonymous said...

The civil society are not any better than politicians , take the money out of the equation and these groups will be nothing but empty shells.All this tough talk is not for justice or truth but for attracting donor funding , that is why civil society comprises of the elite of kenya just like parliament, even martha karua was a product of the so called civil society and now she is drunk with money and power.

Ivy said...

I hear you guys.

Chris karibu kumekucha

Wanjiku nimekuona

Anonymous said...

Hey,where were u hiding?? Welcome back Chris!!


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