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IEBC Voter Registration 2017

by Terry Gachie
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IEBC is conducting the second and last phase of mass voter registration starting this January. The exercise kicked off on the 16th January 2017 and is expected to come to a close on 14th February 2017.

The electoral agency is aiming to register 6 million new voters. This is your last chance to register as a voter before the 2017 general elections.

The Biometric Voter Registration (BVR) kits are available in every constituency and the registration exercise is being undertaken at designated centers.

Those who wish to register are expected to present themselves at a registration center with their National Identity Card or passport.

The exercise has faced challenges in various parts of the country. In some registration centers, the BVR kits have stopped working and this has temporarily paralyzed the exercise.

Such problems have been reported in Nakuru and Mombasa. This raises questions over the dependability of the kits and whether IEBC will reach the 6 million new voters target by 14th February.

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The month long process is estimated to involve 21,000 personnel countrywide. Of these, 15,586 are clerks, 2,900 voter educators, and 1,775 registration assistant, and the rest are ICT support assistants and registration officers. The total number of registration centers is 24,613.

Politicians have been making rounds in various counties, especially their strongholds, to encourage the public to register as voters.

Cord leader Raila Odinga was in Western Kenya for a voter mobilization drive. Kalonzo Musyoka and Moses Wetangula were in Wajir Country to mobilize locals to register as voters so that they can vote for change in August 2017.

Other leaders vying for various elective positions have been visiting their electorates and unconfirmed reports point to cases of issuance of incentives.

At present, there are 15.9 million voters, 9 million potential voters, and 6 million targets of new voters. The 6 million target may be a bit ambitious but IEBC terms this as the best case scenario.

Those who have already registered cannot register again. Those who registered but lost their cards do not need to register afresh.

Those who wish to change their voting zones should visit IEBC offices for such services since the registration centers are only registering new voters.

The New IEBC Team

President Uhuru Kenyatta has appointed a new IEBC lead team. Wanyonyi Wafula Chebukati will serve as the Chairman while Consolata Nkatha Bucha Maina, Boya Molu, and Roselyn K. Akombe, and three others as the commissioners.

In 2016, the IEBC chairman and commissioners resigned following calls by the opposition, workers unions, Kenyans living abroad, clerics, and the general public.

These parties were irate about the agency’s alleged involvement in the Chickengate scandal that saw the then IEBC officials receive bribes to award tenders illegally to Smith and Ouzman, a UK-based company that specializes in printing security documents.

After the registration, other activities such transmission of data to the central database, mass printing of voting materials, and final register preparation will be undertaken.

To learn more, visit the IEBC website.

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