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Akombe back in the country after 6 years

By Wangu Kanuri December 30th, 2022 2 min read

Former Kenyan Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) Dr Roselyn Akombe is back in the country after fleeing for six years.

She fled the country to New York, United States in 2017, a week before the slated presidential elections re-run, on October 26. She would then resign.

However, she has since returned and according to a post she made on Twitter, Dr Akombe said, “No place like home! #Kenya.”


Also read: Stop these senseless deaths, Akombe says after IEBC staffer’s puzzling death

In an interview with BBC Akombe said that she was under political “siege,” unable to reach consensus or take any decisions.

She added that the death threats were anonymous threats, and she had been put under pressure to resign.

She said she did not “feel safe enough to be able to go home” in the foreseeable future.

Adding that she had fled in fear for her life, Akombe recalled the late Chris Msando’s murder, which happened before the August 2017 elections and shared, “You’ll be suicidal to think that nothing will happen to you. I have never felt the kind of fear that I felt in my own country.”

The IEBC said it regretted her decision to quit, while its chairman conceded that he could not guarantee that the poll would be credible.

IEBC chairman Wafula Chebukati said he regretted Ms Akombe’s decision to quit and warned Kenya’s political leaders not to “interfere with the process.”

Also read: Akombe: Chiloba warned me against testifying in probe on Msando’s death

When asked whether IEBC was safe, Akombe answered, “I do not feel safe enough to go back home. This is not what I thought.”

The Supreme Court annulled the result of the original 8 August poll, when former President Uhuru Kenyatta was declared winner, after finding irregularities and illegalities.

On whether IEBC was competent enough to hold the October 26th elections, Akombe said, “IEBC would not be able to conduct a credible election, arguing that there were things that were going wrong that the commission was not telling Kenyans about.”

However, the IEBC held the October 26th repeat elections with retired President Kenyatta being declared the presidential winner.