IEBC ready for final registration targeting over 8 million voters

The stage is set for the final phase of mass voter registration that may tilt the scales in the general election amid concerns over key electoral timelines.

According to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission roadmap, the month-long voter listing will begin on January 16.

The team, led by CEO Ezra Chiloba, targets more than eight million voters who have acquired ID cards. This means more than 23 million Kenyans will be eligible to vote.

The new registration statistics could present a completely different political scenario for leading presidential contenders because only 14.3 million Kenyans were registered as voters in 2013.

Slightly over 1.5 million Kenyans have been listed as voters since then.Political pundits have once again predicted the election will be won on the strength of voter registration.

In December, for instance, Cord co-principal Raila Odinga retreated to his Nyanza backyard and urged residents to register in large numbers to send packing President Uhuru Kenyatta.

“We want victory in the first round. The best tool to realise that is by you acquiring ID and voter’s cards,” he said on December 19.

But even as the IEBC rolls out voter registration, its electoral calendar has been hit by court injunctions on at least two critical subjects.

The High Court has temporarily stopped the Sh2.5 billion ballot papers tender, as well as the audit of the voters’ register.

According to the initial IEBC roadmap, the audit of the register that had been awarded to KPMG was to end on January 18.

The report was then to be submitted to Parliament on February 1. However, the High Court blocked the tender, pending hearing and determination of a suit filed by Cord.

The coalition argued that the intended audit is clouded by “opaqueness, secrecy and lack of accountability”.

via IEBC ready for final registration targeting over 8 million voters | The Star, Kenya

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