The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) suffers from low public confidence, a panel interviewing candidates heard on Thursday.
Ms Cecilia Ngoyoni, who interviewed for the IEBC commissioner job in the afternoon said that the agency’s main challenges were that it lacked public trust, poor communication, and external interference.
“IEBC suffers from low public confidence. Going forward, there is need to manage the perception because during elections…public perception is as good as reality. We also need to improve our trust with various stakeholders,” she told panelists.
Ngoyoni was responding to a question on what she would do to improve the electoral agency’s public image should she succeed this next step, saying that the commission needed to largely work on how it communicates to the public.
“IEBC has not had very good communication avenues in the past. If you don’t communicate well, the public will think you are hiding something,” she noted.
Ngoyoni, who has previously served in IEBC in 2012, argued that Kenya’s electoral process is highly emotive and that the country needs to go back to the drawing board and review its legal framework in terms of how commissions are run.
As regards security during elections, she is of the idea to continually involve the police force to avert a situation like that witnessed in the 2007 General Election.
“We will need to work with the police, and engage with other stakeholders deliberately to ensure a smooth process,” she said.
Cecilia Ngoyoni is a state officer sitting at the Office of the President, and the third candidate to face the selection panel on day two of the search.
Others before her on Thursday were Ms Caroline Njeri and Dr Catherine Kamindo.
35 candidates are seeking four positions at the agency. One candidate, Abdalla Mohamed withdrew his application yesterday after it emerged that he had forged his academic certificates.
A seven-member selection panel chaired by Dr Elizabeth Muli is interviewing the candidates, until July 22.