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Ruto, Raila Ignite Morning Twitter Clash Over Cherera Four

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He said that the four officials, IEBC Vice chairperson Juliana Cherera and commissioners Francis Wanderi, Irene Masit and Justus Nyang’aya must be made to pay for…

President William Ruto has responded to former Prime Minister Raila Odinga’s criticism of the Kenya Kwanza government, with regard to the Parliamentary process seeking to remove the four dissenting Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commissioners (IEBC).

In a tweet on Friday, November 25, Ruto reminded the opposition that the handshake deal between former President Uhuru Kenyatta and Raila had disrupted the normal operations of the government institutions, including the IEBC.

He said that the four officials, IEBC Vice chairperson Juliana Cherera and commissioners Francis Wanderi, Irene Masit and Justus Nyang’aya must be made to pay for nearly subverting the democratic will of the people in the August 9 elections.

IEBC Vice-chair, Juliana Cherera during a press address at Serena Hotel in Nairobi. /FILE

“The lords of impunity, who destroyed oversight institutions using the handshake fraud, should allow parliament to hold rogue officials who put the nation in danger by subverting the democratic will of the people to be held to account. The new order is the rule of law not the wishes of big men,” he wrote.

Even before the Head of State could catch his breath, Raila shot back moments later, turning Twitter into a battleground on Friday morning in defence of his criticism of the President.

“There is due process and natural justice, things aren’t just done at the whims of the Executive.

“The rule of law must prevail and not your jungle laws that you want to institute so as to subjugate Kenyans to a conveyor belt system of elections come 2027. We shall not relent,” he responded.

Raila, alongside Kalonzo Musyoka and Martha Karua on Thursday, November 24, claimed that the petition to kick out the quartet did not contain any sufficient grounds to warrant their ouster, arguing that the process was unconstitutional and an act of revenge by the ruling coalition against Vice Chairperson Juliana Cherera and the three other commissioners for trying to scuttle the August 9 polls.

“This probe is politically motivated, it is a continuation of the witch-hunt mission that Ruto is on. We advise the commissioners to boycott it in the interest of constitutionalism and rule of law,” he stated.

During the same media address, Raila cautioned Kenyans against allowing the Head of State to regress the country to the Nyayo regime.

“Kenyans are being turned into passive bystanders in the affairs with grave implications for our community, our stability and governance as a nation. This kind of impunity, selective injustice and capture of institutions will have grave consequences.

“We are here to sound a warning. No one should lie to this regime that we will sit back and watch a return of the Nyayo regime by another name,” he said.

Reiterating her previous sentiments, Karua stated that she will commit to ensuring that she will not drop her guard against any scent of a dictatorial system of governance that was common during the late Kenya’s second President Daniel Arap Moi’s rule.

“We will not tire to remind Kenyans that if we drop our vigilance, we are in for a ruthless dictator than we have ever seen and that has not been witnessed in this region,” Karua expressed. 

The four were accused of gross violation of the Constitution and a breach of their oath of office, which makes their status, according to them, illegal to hold office. They were prominent for denying the presidential election results on Monday, August 15 as announced by IEBC chair Wafula Chebukati.

Raila Odinga and Kalonzo Musyoka in Parliament for the hearing of petitions seeking the removal from office of Juliana Cherera and three other IEBC commissioners on November 24, 2022. /VIRALTEAKE


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