This is not the first time that the opposition, led by ODM leader Raila Odinga, has come out to show their desire to weaken independent institutions in Kenya.
At the moment, Mr Odinga, who is now the presidential candidate of the National Super Alliance (NASA) coalition, has threatened the Court of Appeal if they overturn a decision made at the High Court.
High Court judges Enoch Chacha Mwita, Aggrey Muchelule, and Weldon Korir on April 7 made a ruling that the presidential results at the constituency level, as announced by returning officers, are final and should not be subject to changes by the IEBC at the national tallying center.
The opposition leaders are mad that the electoral body has appealed the decision at the Court of Appeal, which is baffling since they claim to observe the rule of law. The law is very clear: anyone who is not satisfied by a court ruling has a right to challenge the decision at a higher court. The IEBC, therefore, has a right to be heard at the Court of Appeal, and even at the Supreme Court should they file an appeal.
Even Chief Justice David Maraga has warned NASA flag bearer Raila Odinga and other opposition leaders against intimidating the Judiciary, saying judges and magistrates will not be intimidated to rule in favor of bullies just because of the threats.
“Politicians, let the Judiciary do its work. We do not want statements that are meant to intimidate judicial officers. Judges and magistrates will not determine cases on what is said but based on the law and facts,” Mr Maraga said this week when swearing in Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu as a member of the Judiciary Service Commission.
After the 2007/08 post-election violence, experts called for the strengthening of Kenyan institutions so that political disputes can be addressed peacefully. As a result, the Judiciary, the police service and other institutions were reformed to gain public trust. That is why Raila Odinga went to the Supreme Court in 2013 to challenge the presidential election results.
The current level of increased threats from Raila to independent bodies, such as NCIC — which has cautioned over the risks of using the phrase “10 million strong” — can take the country back to where were in 2007.
Kenyans are tired of going to the streets to fight for politicians. Raila’s threats for mass action every time a decision is not made in his favour are backward.
Kenyan institutions have to be supported by all political leaders. That is the only way we can move forward as a country.