Kenya Former EC Boss, Kivuitu Leaves Behind Tarnished Legacy

information pills geneva;”>He passed on Monday night at 10 pm at the MP Shah Hospital in Nairobi where he had been admitted for almost a week.

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viagra order geneva;”>The EC boss who was adversely blamed for massive rigging of the 2007 polls succumbed to a long battle with throat cancer.

The family of former Electoral Commission of Kenya boss Samuel Kivuitu has announced that they will delay his burial until after the polls.

Kivuitu will be remembered to have said that he wasn’t sure who won the 2007 polls despite him signing the certificate to Mwai Kibaki which paved way for the evening swearing in ceremony December 30 2007.

This plugged the country into the post election violence that left 1, 300 people dead and thousands displaced.

Kivuitu was head of the now defunct Electoral Commission of Kenya.

He was reappointed to his post by the Kibaki ahead of the 2007 general election, having already been in charge during Kenya’s general elections in 1997, 2002 as well as a constitutional referendum in 2005.

However his reappointment was a subject in yesterday’s presidential debate where former Justice Minister Martha Karua was asked by the prime Minister to tell Kenyans why she pushed for the reappointment of Kivuitu despite existence of the right procedure to constitute the EC body.

Raila wondered why the law was not followed in the appointment as agreed upon in the Inter Party Parliamentary Group in 1997.

Karua who were among the people who amended the law to provide for the parties to join the government in the appointment of the EC chairman defended the then decision to have Kivuitu as chair saying all the parties seating in the opposition were not legal.

“Raila’s ODM was not represented in parliament as he was still recognized as a member of Narc and therefore could not be consulted. The only party that was consulted was KANU led by Uhuru Kenyatta who had joined the government,” Karua said.

Raila defended his party’s decision to take mass action after the disputed presidential elections saying the courts were slanted and mass action was the best way they could get justice.

Karua reaffirmed her statements that ‘You should not blame the ECK commissioners when parties are the ones who rigged.’

Kivuitu will be remembered for his role in the bungled 2007 elections, he was accused of being partisan, and an accusation that eroded the confidence Kenyans had in the ECK.

His Life

Kivuitu was born on February 16, 1939 in Wamunyu in Machakos County. Kivuitu like any other Kenya at his time was educated at Makerere University and the University of Dar Salaam.

He began his early childhood education at Mbaikini Primary School from 1946 to 1954, before proceeding to Machakos School from 1955 to 1958 for his High school education. In 1959 Kivuitu joined Makerere University Kampala and studied for 2 years before proceeding to the university of Dar-es-salaam from 1961 to 1964 to study law.

In 1964, he was employed, as state counsel then became a resident magistrate before moving to private practice in 1968. Kivuitu has been a member of the law society of Kenya for 4 years.

He was first elected the MP for Parklands (now expanded Westlands) in 1969 but lost the seat to Njoroge Mungai in 1974 with only 5 votes that remain very memorable in his mind.

His mission in Parliament from the onset was to agitate for improved working conditions for all domestic workers coming from an area largely inhabited by the Asians who employed a bulk of Africans as domestic workers. These were also his major voters, especially those from his Kamba community who up to this day have very close relationship with Asian businessmen and are to be found employed in Asian shops, factories and homes.

Tried in 1983 to recapture the seat but failed. Kivuitu Returned to the limelight in 1992 with the appointment to vice chairman of ECK. Samuel Kivuitu was appointed to the post By Daniel Arap Moi replacing Zacchaeus Chesoni, who was the head of the Electoral commission during Kenya’s 1992 general election a position he held until its disbandment after the 2007 polls.

Kivuitu will be remembered for his brave fight against tribalism in the capital. On 28 August 1987, at a press conference he called on the Tuesday before this date, Kivuitu said a certain ethnic community (read the Kikuyu) was plotting to take all seats in Nairobi and control the city politics. At the time critics agreed that Kivuitu was right adding that it was not just the Kikuyu community but a whole but the Murang’a take over group.

But Kivuitu was sure the plot would flop but if it went through, then the city would be blown up. Then, out of the 8 MPs in Nairobi, only himself, Leakey of Langata and Fred Omido (Bahati) were non-kikuyu. In fact, the three had taken the seats by chance.

He was reappointed to his post by the Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki ahead of the 2007 general election against the law concerning the appointment of the EC commissioners reviewed by the IPPG of 1997.

He was among the people blamed for the elections that lacked transparency in Kenya in the year 2007 which eventually led to post-election violence. He later tried to exonerate himself, arguing that he more or less was a puppet of some other forces but those on the losing side could not hear of it.

Education Minister Mutula Kilonzo has described Kivuitu as a man who was dedicated to bring equality to Kenyans.

“Kivuitu was the man who trained me how to stand and speak in court and I wish to send my sincere condolence to his Family and the People of Machakos County for the loss of the leader who was a champion of change,” Mutula said.

Until his death Kivuitu resided in Ruaraka, he was married to Priscilla Ndululu and later divorced. The lawyer served with 7 children – two daughters and five sons.


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