Those who sabotaged August 8th Elections should be sentenced to death

The greatest Article of the 2010 Constitution of Kenya is Article 1. Subarticle 1 of Article 1 states that “All sovereign power belongs to the people of Kenya and shall be exercised only in accordance with this Constitution.” It therefore follows that anyone who violates this Article of the Constitution commits the greatest violation of the Constitution and can be equated to those who commit treason, military coup, civilian coup, and economic sabotage. Actually, I want to argue that those who sabotaged the August 8th Elections committed all of the above.

The sovereign power that belongs to the people of Kenya, and according subarticle 2 of Article 1 of the Constitution of Kenya, is exercised “either directly or through their democratically elected representatives”. The sovereign power of the people is then delegated to parliament, the national executive and the executive structures in the county governments, and the Judiciary and independent tribunals. When a structure under which the sovereign power of the people is sabotaged, then whoever has sabotaged that power has committed treason.

Treason is “the crime of betraying one’s country” and there is no worse way to betray one’s country than to subvert the sovereign power of the people. As was argued by Jubilee Lawyers during the Supreme Court hearings, NASA Petition did not show that the sovereign will of the people, based on raw numbers, was subverted. However, since the numbers in question were produced in a process that was sabotaged through negligence and willful breakage of Elections Laws, those numbers themselves were a product of a sabotaged election. It therefore means the process through which Kenyans delegate their sovereign power to national executive was sabotaged, and whoever sabotaged this process should be found guilty of committing treason. The crime of reason in Kenya is punishable by death.

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NASA Coalition claimed severally that the military was used as part of a wider scheme to sabotage the sovereign power of the people. Although NASA did not demonstrate these claims in the Supreme Court, they have continued to make these allegations post Supreme Court ruling, where they say that the technology that was used to feed Kenyans with what IEBC said were mere statistics was installed and operated by military personnel at Karen. If this be the case, then we could also say that the sabotage of August 8th Elections amounted to a soft military coup.

A civilian coup happens when the subversion of people’s sovereign power does not involve the military. The assumption that the military was used in the sabotage of August 8th Elections is just that, an assumption. Until Raila Odinga and NASA proves that the military was used to subvert the people’s sovereign power, I will assume that the sabotage was purely civilian. The crime of civilian coup shouldn’t have a punishment any less than treason or military coup, both of which receive death sentence.

We may say that it is a matter of mere argument to conclude that the sabotage of August 8th Elections amounted to treason, military coup and/or civilian coup, but we cannot ignore the fact that the sabotage amounted to economic sabotage. During the May-August 2017 campaigns, there were individuals who vandalised parts of SGR, and President Uhuru Kenyatta termed that vandalism as Economic sabotage. “I want to announce today that those who will be prosecuted for destroying Kenyans’ property; for destroying what belongs to our children, I pray for forgiveness from God, but I will sign their death sentence for them to be hanged,” President Uhuru said in May 31st 2017.

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The value of the part of SGR that was vandalised is not available, but it was approximated to run into millions of shillings. The sabotaged August 8th Elections already cost the country Kshs 49.9 Billion shillings, and according to an article by Daily Nation, the rerun Presidential Election will cost no less than Kshs 10 Billion. Given the grounds with which the Supreme Court nullified the Presidential Election, it is expected that Magistrate Courts, the High Courts, Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court will further nullify a number of County Assembly, Parliamentary and Gubernatorial Elections using the similar reasoning – that election is a process and not an event. The amount of money the country will have to spend on fresh elections across the country will therefore come close to another Kshs 49.9 Billion that was already spent on the August 8th Elections. This close to Kshs 50 billion that Kenyans are going to waste to conduct fresh elections is nothing short of economic sabotage.

The refusal for IEBC to conduct elections beyond reproach is because those who botch elections are not held accountable. When issues of procurement and technology failures were pointed out by the Supreme Court in 2013, no IEBC staff or commissioner was found guilty and jailed. Interestingly though, the IEBC partners in chicken gate crime in the UK were jailed in their country for bribing the IEBC, whereas the receivers of the bribes were given hefty pays then asked to leave office.

The way the country rewards public officers whenever the officers fail to deliver their mandate is the reason we continue to have institutions like EACC, IEBC and others take the processes we have asked them to safeguard for granted. Unless all of the IEBC staff that were involved in the sabotage of August 8th Elections are rounded up in courts and sentenced to death, we will still have institutions like IEBC messing up the Sovereign Power of the People.

Odipo Riaga
Managing Editor at KachTech Media
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