John Kerry calls for speedy probe into murder of IEBC staff

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President Uhuru Kenyatta and former US Secretary of State John Kerry, when he visited Kenya, May 4, 2015. [Photo|dhanaanmedia.com]

Carter Centre election monitoring team in Kenya has paid tribute to the family of Chris Msando, following his murder over the weekend.

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) ICT manager went missing July 28, and was found dead a day later by the police, who took his body to the City Mortuary. IEBC chairman Wafula Chebukati confirmed the body, July 31.

The Carter Center launched an international election observation mission in Kenya, upon invitation by the IEBC.

Its core team of experts established a presence in Nairobi on April 14 and deployed 12 long-term observers to locations across Kenya the following week. It will deploy an additional 32 short-term observers in the lead-up to the polls.

Carter Center co-leader, former US Secretary of State John Kerry, said Msando was dedicated to provide free, fair and credible polls.

“We all wish to honour Mr Msando’s dedication to transparent elections. Security for the elections and all election administrators throughout the electoral process is paramount for the conduct of credible and democratic elections,” said Kerry, and called for comprehensive investigations into the murder, Tuesday.

He warned against attacks on IEBC and other independent institutions, saying whether verbal or physical, the attacks remained unacceptable form of public discourse.

“We hope that his death will not have a chilling effect on voters and electoral authorities. The Centre further implores politicians to refrain from politicising this event,” he added, in a statement seen by Daily Nation.

Carter Centre said its technical experts had enjoyed a productive relationship with Msando and were personally saddened by his death.

Kerry and monitoring group co-leader Aminata Touré, a former Senegal prime minister, are expected in Kenya this week to oversee a delegation of 80 vote monitors.

The mission will make a comprehensive assessment of the electoral process for compliance with national law and international election standards by observing the campaign environment; the voter registration and verification processes; the political participation of women, youth, and persons with disabilities; the administration of the elections; voting-day procedures; and the counting and tabulation of ballots.

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