What you need to know:
- IEBC chairman Wafula Chebukati said on Tuesday that plans to enrol Kenyan voters living abroad had been suspended.
- IEBC announced it had enrolled only 624,306 additional votes in the third week, expanding its total to a mere 2,164,184 against the targeted 6.1 million.
- Mandera County has also surpassed the target after hitting 100.26 per cent with 26,275 already registered.
Close to four million Kenyans risk being locked out of the General Election, with only a week before the voter registration deadline lapses, the Electoral Commission has warned.
Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) chairman Wafula Chebukati said on Tuesday that plans to enrol Kenyan voters living abroad had been suspended, adding that the diaspora voter registration would now be conducted only in Uganda, Tanzania, Burundi, Rwanda and South Africa.
The commission announced it had enrolled only 624,306 additional votes in the third week, expanding its total to a mere 2,164,184 against the targeted 6.1 million.
“The commission recorded 2,164,185 applicants for registration as voters in the third week of the month-long campaign. This is only half the weekly target (50.54 per cent),” said Mr Chebukati.
At least 23 counties have surpassed 50 per cent of their cumulative target for week three, with Kajiado County breaking the record with 187 per cent of the 23,927 it was expected to register already listed.
Mandera County has also surpassed the target after hitting 100.26 per cent with 26,275 already registered.
Some of the counties marching towards the IEBC target include Kirinyaga 83 per cent, Kiambu 79 per cent, Narok 78 per cent, Murang’a 77 per cent, Wajir 75 per cent, Nakuru 73 per cent, Garrisa 66 per cent, West Pokot and Meru each 64 per cent, Tana River and Laikipia 62 per cent each.
“We urge all those who have not registered to do so in this last week. As stated before, the exercise closes on 14th February and there will not be any extension,” warned Mr Chebukati.
In Nyanza and Western, despite massive mobilisation campaigns, only Homa Bay has gone passed the average mark after registering 56 per cent of its 128,251 target with 51,705 registered, followed by Migori at 50 per cent, having registered 42,176 of the 87,306 mark. Siaya, Nyamira and Kisii are all bellow 40 per cent.
All counties in Western have been hit by serious apathy, with Busia only managing 41 per cent, Bungoma 38 per cent, Kakamega 35 per cent while Vihiga with a target of 102,997 for the third week has only managed 27 per cent.
Mr Chebukati also clarified that all Kenyans registered in November 2012 are not required to register again.
In Central region, only Nyandarua and Nyeri are below 50 per cent but with impressive figures due to high population in the area, while in the Rift Valley, only Samburu, Kericho, Turkana and Elgeyo-Marakwet are yet to hit the average mark.
In Eastern, Meru and Machakos are the only counties with above average numbers, with Meru already at 64 per cent while 59 per cent of voters in Nairobi, where the commission had set a target of 597,925 are yet to be listed.
Mr Chebukati also had shocking news for thousands of Kenyans living abroad who had hoped to vote in the coming election, when he announced the planned registration of voters outside the African diaspora had been cancelled. “Considering the logistics and constraints of time, the commission saw it prudent and tenable to start with these five countries. The law allows for progressive registration and voting by Kenyans in the diaspora and more countries will be included in future,” explained the official.
Kenyans in various prisons will be allowed to vote and they will be registered from February 20 for one week in all the country’s 118 jails.
Prisoners to vote.
“The commission has developed regulations that will see prisoners vote only for the presidential seat in the 2017 General Election,” said Mr Chebukati.
The commission also announced that a cleaning of the register that had revealed 128,296 shared IDs had condemned 57,603 records.
“A total of 50,174 national identification numbers were confirmed to be legitimate and hence accepted as part of the register.
The commission has now published the remaining 78,752 voters with shared national identification numbers. The list includes 21,149 records that bear the same ID numbers and same names and 57,603 records whose ID numbers did not match the National Registration Bureau records we had submitted for verification,” the commission announced.
Those affected by the double registrations have been given 10 days from February 6 to address their cases or be expunged permanently from the voters’ roll.
Students in various colleges will also get the opportunity to register from tomorrow for one week after the commission released a timetable to guide the registration in various universities and colleges.
“The students will be allowed to register for any registration centre of their choice countrywide. The list of institutions and the BVR kits allocated have been published at the commission’s website,” said Mr Chebukati.