IEBC Raises Alarm With 4.5 Million Kenyans Yet to Register

  • Undated image of IEBC ballot boxes after voters had cast their votes
    Undated image of IEBC ballot boxes after voters had cast their votes
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  • Time is ticking for Kenyans who have not yet registered to vote according to the Independent Electoral Boundaries Commission (IEBC). 

    The commission has revealed that 4.5 million Kenyans have not yet registered to vote with the deadline set on Wednesday, November 3, 2021.

    IEBC kicked off the exercise on Monday, October 4, intending to register 6 million new voters, with most comprising of the youth and new voters from the diaspora.

    An undated image of Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) chairman Wafula Chebukati at a past event
    An undated image of Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) chairman Wafula Chebukati at a past event
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    According to IEBC commissioner Justus Nyang'aya, only 1.5 million voters have registered to vote over the three-week period that the registration exercise has been ongoing.

    Speaking at the Nyeri Maximum Prison during a registration exercise intended to register voters in prison, he expressed his disappointment in the dismal numbers.

     "We are not sure why they are registering low numbers as the exercise enters the fourth week, the numbers are not impressive," he lamented.

     He called on the youth to register to vote to avoid the last-minute rush to the registration centrers.

    He however expressed optimism in the commission's ability to reach the initial six million voter mark by the end of the week.

    Nyang'aya called for research to be conducted to determine the reason behind the low numbers.

    He reiterated that the commission is working to increase the number of registered voters by easing the voter registration process for Kenyans, paying close attention to special interest groups such as people with disability (PWDs), those in the diaspora, and prisoners.

    The commission through Chairperson Wafula Chebukati recently announced a new directive to allow for registration to be conducted in open places to cater for PWDs.

    "The IEBC has put in place measures to facilitate access to registration, voter information and polling by conducting registration in Premises that can be easily accessed by PWDs s such as roadsides, markets, and other open public areas," stated Chebukati.

    IEBC will include six more countries in its diaspora list among them South Sudan, the USA, the United Kingdom, Canada, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates as they have reached the minimum requirement of 3,000 voters.

    The IEBC body decried the late enactment of electoral laws which was too close to the polls on Tuesday, August 9, 2022, which undermines the planning and implementation of activities within the set of electoral timelines.

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    Voters queue at a polling station in Rurii ward, Nyandarua County on Tuesday, May 18, 2021
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