Francis Wanderi, a commissioner with the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), has submitted his resignation following the suspension of the “Cherera Four” by President William Ruto.
Following the resignations of IEBC Vice Chair Juliana Cherera on December 2 and Justus Nyang’aya on December 5, Wanderi is the third commissioner to leave the electoral body in recent days.
Wanderi said in a statement to newsrooms on Wednesday that the decision was brought on by unfair criticism that, in his opinion, has damaged his ability to serve on the commission.
A portion of the statement stated, “This decision, while exceedingly painful and traumatic for me and my family, has been prompted by unfair and unwarranted public lynching based on false information, ruining my reputation and integrity.”
The troubled commissioner continued by denying any inference that his resignation amounted to an admission of guilt about the charges brought against him.
He further cautioned that the same disputes inside the commission would continue until the governance mechanisms of the electoral body were streamlined.
When he submitted his resignation, he stated, “I do not do so because there comes a point when the country is more important than any individual, even my own hopes to have our electoral systems reflect those of democracies more advanced than us.
“My resignation and those of my colleagues will not assist the country achieve its ambitions for democratic and electoral reform until the governance flaws inside the commission are resolved.”
Wanderi expressed his gratitude to President Ruto for giving him the chance to “service the country faithfully.”
The commissioners are currently awaiting word from a panel looking into their conduct for suspected grave constitutional violations.
Aggrey Muchelule of the High Court was chosen by President Ruto to preside over the tribunal, and he was followed by Col. (Rtd.) Saeed Khamis Saeed, Carolyne Kamende Daudi, Linda Gakii Kiome, Mathew Njaramba Nyabena, and Carolyne Kamende Daudi.
Peter Munge Murage will serve as the lead Counsel, assisted by Zamzam Abdi Abib, and Kibet Kirui Emmanuel and Irene Tunta Nchoe will serve as joint secretaries for the tribunal.