The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) on Thursday, June 9, conducted a simulation exercise to show parties and their election agents how presidential results will be streamed on August 9, 2022.
However, the session turned divisive after Saitabao Kanchori, the Chief Agent to Azimio President candidate Raila Odinga, pointed out some system failures in the simulation exercise.
Kanchori pointed out a discrepancy in the Form 34As that, hypothetically were supposed to be uploaded from the polling stations, and downloaded for tallying at the Bomas of Kenya.
In the dry run, the system showed 164 forms being uploaded before quickly falling to zero - something that the agents sought an explanation for.IEBC Commissioner Prof Abdi Guliye during the voter transmission simulation exercise at the Bomas of Kenya on Thursday. June 9, 2022.IEBC
As Raila's agent criticised the IEBC, his microphone went off and IEBC commissioner Abdi Guliye accused him of using the exercise to score political points.
"If this is what is happening during a simulation, already we can see that we have a problem with 2,900 polling stations yet we will have 47,000 polling stations on the actual day. How much worse will it be?" the Azimio Chief Agent complained.
"Please ask a question and leave politics. We are here to listen, demonstrate and ask you to give feedback on the questions," Guliye interjected.
"I was watching the screen and I think if others were watching, we had 160-something forms, then all of a sudden it went down to zero, then it back to the same figure. Could you tell us the integrity of this system?" Kanchori lamented before his mic went off due to what commission officials termed a technical hitch.
IEBC Director of ICT, Michael Ouma, explained that the delay in transmission was only at Bomas, adding that the Commission was using mobile network. He added that on the election date, all political parties will have accounts that they will use to access the documents.
"We are using mobile networks, there is bound to be delays. All political parties will have accounts in this systems to allay any manipulation of the form," Ouma stated.
Gerry Owiti, Alternative Party of Kenya leader, raised concerns as to why in the 2017 elections, the system failed for one hour between 1am and 2am during transmission of results. Other agents challenged the clarity of images of Form 34A sent from polling stations.
IEBC explained that the hitch was caused by network fluctuations, noting that that it would procure satellite modems for 1,111 polling stations that are not 3G covered.
You can follow the live simulation here:
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