The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission – IEBC Deputy CEO Ruth Kulundu shot to the limelight after the fallout within the country’s electoral body.
Prior to her appointment as IEBC Deputy Secretary, Kulundu served as the commission’s manager for elections in Siaya County.
After her basic education, Kulundu joined Bishop Njenga Girls High School in Kakamega county in 1988 before joining the University of Nairobi in 1989 to study a Bachelor’s degree in Commerce.
While at the University of Nairobi, Kulundu was actively involved in students’ leadership and was the Organizing Secretary of Nairobi University Insurance Students Association (NUISA)
She later advanced her studies pursuing a Masters in Strategic Management at the same university.
Kulundu is also a member of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, and the Associate of Chartered Insurance of London (ACIL) and Kenya.
She boasts of 27 years experience in both private and the public service. She is also an election expert and versed with management of organizations and people.
She previously worked as IEBC Regional Elections Coordinator from 2010-2017. She served as a regional coordinator in Nairobi until 2012, before she was moved to Lower Eastern in 2013. She was later transferred to Nairobi before being promoted to be a returning officer in Siaya County.
She is deemed to be a no- nonsense officer after she suspended election campaigns in Raila’s backyard of Siaya County for two weeks, becoming the first and only suspension to have been made by a Returning Officer in the history of elections in Kenya since 1963.
According to Kulundu, the decision was made after a meeting between the electoral agency officials and the county security team following heightened tension prior to the election.
During the suspension, she also warned candidates who violate her directive that they would be barred from participating in the elections.
Her 12-year reign as an election manager is now on the edge, after IEBC CEO Marjan Marjan interdicted her in a crackdown on senior staff alleged to have aided the operations of four dissenting commissioners who disowned the Presidential results.
However, Azimio affiliated MPs have come out guns blazing defending Kulundu, saying that IEBC Chairman Wafula Chebukati, Commissioners Abdi Guliye and Boya Molu should go home and stop causing confusion in the commission, threatening them with unspecified action.