Three Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) officials have been arrested in Marsabit County for allegedly engaging in elections-related malpractices.
The three, who presided over elections in Loiyngalani Ward in Laisamis sub-county, Marsabit County, have been detained at Laisamis Police Station.
Marsabit Deputy County Commissioner Langat Bosek said the three electoral agency officials will be arraigned in Marsabit court on Friday.
“Three IEBC officials are being held at Laisamis Police Station awaiting arraignment in court in connection with sabotage and negligence during the voting exercise in Loiyangalani Ward,” Mr Bosek said.
The three presided over elections at Loiyangalani Primary School polling station Stream 1, Loiyangalani Primary School Stream 2, and El Molo Primary School polling station.
Mr Bosek said the trio will be charged with sabotage and negligence during the election process.
The officials, he said, delayed the logistic protocols when they were being transported from Laisamis to Loiyangalani on August 8, 2022, forcing them to travel from Laisamis town to Loiyangalani on August 9, 2022.
They were accused of abandoning ballot boxes after the election exercise only for the police officers to ferry the ballot boxes to the Laisamis constituency tallying centre on Wednesday. The three went to the centre on Thursday. They were also accused of failing to upload Form 35A on time.
However, one of the accused IEBC officials, said they faced myriads of challenges while travelling to Loiyangalani.
They claimed that their work was greatly impeded by network connectivity challenges.
They said that they were unable to travel from Loiyangalani to Laisamis town due to a lack of transport soon after the conclusion of the voting exercise on August 10, 2022.
The police officers who were manning the polling stations were directed by the constituency returning officer to ferry the ballot boxes to the centre.
On Thursday, they hired a vehicle to take them to Laisamis town to present the election materials. They were arrested after submitting the election reports.
The arrest of the three IEBC officials came only a few hours after former Laisamis MP Mussa Arbelle threatened to challenge the outcome of the polls in court.
Mr Arbelle claimed that the electoral process in the Loiyangalani Ward was marred by malpractices.