Ahmed Issack Hassan, Chairperson of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission, IEBC.
A common accusation directed at the defunct Electoral Commission of Kenya ECK, was that it its commissioners lacked independence. To ensure the independence of the IEBC and its top leadership, the New Constitution has spelled out the factors that disqualify one from serving as a commissioner. Excerpts from Article 88:
88. (2) A person is not eligible for appointment as a member of the Commission if the person— (a) has, at any time within the preceding five years, held office, or stood for election as— (i) a member of Parliament or of a county assembly; or (ii) a member of the governing body of a political party; or (b) holds any State office.
(3) A member of the Commission shall not hold another public office.
The Commission also has a special unit (formed through the Political Parties Act No 10 of 2007) led by a Registrar of Political Parties RPP, that regulates parties and candidates. This office was equally visible as its parent Commission, as the country prepared for general elections in March of 2013. The Act required the fresh registration and the publishing of audited accounts, by all political parties, among a raft of new laws.
7.(1) The members of the Commission shall be appointed for a single term of six years and shall not be eligible for re-appointment. (IEBC Act, 2011). This means that the current Commissioners who were appointed in November 2011, will conduct the next general elections expected in August 2017.