EU EOM Kenya Statement 25 October 2017

Marietje
The EU EOM has consistently called on all parties to respect the rule of law and the independence of institutions. This morning, most of the judges were away and the Supreme Court did not achieve the  necessary  quorum  to  hear  a  petition  for  a  delay  to  the  poll.  The  lack  of  a  quorum  is  highly unusual for a Supreme Court hearing and has raised serious questions among Kenyan stakeholders, including  about  possible  political  interference.  Hearing  the  case  today  was  critical  for  an adjudication on the election before polling, due to take place tomorrow (Thursday 26 October).  

 
Not hearing this case has de facto cut off the legal path for remedy. Courts have a fundamental role in adjudicating disputes in electoral processes, and in so doing providing access to remedy in case of problems or disputes. Access to legal remedy is a fundamental right enshrined in the Constitution and international law. 
 
The EU EOM will continue to assess the extent to which the judiciary has the opportunity to fulfil its election-related responsibilities, and whether any obstacles are put in its way. The EU EOM calls on  all  sides  to  take  up  grievances  through  judicial  channels,  as  any  alternative  to  this  undermines the Constitution and public security. 
 
The EU EOM in the strongest possible terms calls on all parties to respect institutions for the sake of the integrity of the electoral process, for parties’ own democratic credibility, and for the sake of the fate of Kenya. The EU EOM will continue observing the extent to which the division of powers is guaranteed and protected, as this division is an essential part of a credible election. 
 
We  repeat  our  appeal  to  political  actors  to  come  together  and  overcome  their  divisions,  in  the interest of all Kenyan people. We call on all to respect the rule of law, the separation of powers, and to grant each other security, rights and freedoms. 
 
The inability of the Supreme Court to hear today’s case raises serious questions about due process and  opportunity  for  remedy,  which  undermines  the  credibility  of  the  election.  It  would  have  been much  preferred  for  the  Court  to  have  had  an  opportunity  to  rule  on  this  case,  in  line  with  the Constitution and before the election, in freedom and safety. 

-- Please find below the list of earlier statements of the EU EOM Kenya: 

EU EOM Statement (24/10/2017)

EU EOM Kenya progress update (16/10/2017)

Statement by the EU EOM Kenya (03/10/2017)

EU Election Observation Mission calls for reforms and respect for rule of law to rebuild trust ahead of presidential election re-run (14/09/2017) 

Op-ed in The Star: We didn't 'okay' Kenyan polls (06/09/2017)

Statement of the EU Election Observation Mission following the ruling of the Supreme Court of Kenya on a re-run of the presidential elections within 60 days (01/09/2017)

Statement of the EU Election Observation Mission calling on Kenya’s electoral commission to promptly publish all results forms, for rule of law to be followed, and space for civil society (16/08/2017)

Preliminary Statement of the EU Election Observation Mission for the general election in Kenya (10/08/2017)

Speech by Marietje Schaake, Chief Observer of the EU Election Observation Mission, on the preliminary findings of the Election Observation Mission (10/08/2017)

Post-election communiqué from Heads of International Election Observation Missions (09/08/2017)

Joint communiqué by International Election Observation Missions present for Kenya's elections (07/08/2017)