Reprieve for UDA as Court of Appeal Rules on IEBC Manual Register

  • UDA presidential candidate William Ruto (right) with his running mate Rigathi Gachagua during a media briefing on August 4, 2022
    UDA presidential candidate William Ruto (right) with his running mate Rigathi Gachagua during a media briefing on August 4, 2022.
    NMG
  • Update: The Court of Appeal on Monday, August 8, temporarily stopped the High Court ruling on the use of manual register during the Tuesday, August 9 poll, pending a hearing and determination of the case. 

    This is after the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party had filed a petition challenging a verdict delivered by the High Court on Friday, August 5, that allowed the IEBC to complement the KIEMS kits with the manual register. 

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    The United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party, led by Deputy President William Ruto, on Monday, August 8, filed a petition in court contesting the use of manual voter register by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) as ordered by the High Court. 

    The UDA party claimed that the integrity of the polls was at risk of being compromised if the electoral body relied on a manual register. 

    The commission had previously maintained that it would only use the electronic KIEMS kits on Tuesday, August 9 poll. However, the High Court on Friday, August 5, ordered IEBC to incorporate the manual registers - a directive that they have since complied with. 

    From left IEBC Commissioners Molu Boya, Juliana Cherera and Chair Wafula Chebukati during a prayer meetuing at the Bomas of Kenya on Wednesday, August 3, 2022.
    From left IEBC Commissioners Molu Boya, Juliana Cherera and Chair Wafula Chebukati during a prayer meeting at the Bomas of Kenya on Wednesday, August 3, 2022.
    IEBC

    The move to use manual registers as a backup was supported by proponents of the Azimio la Umoja coalition. On the other hand, the UDA party advocated for a pure electronic register.  

    “We shall now deploy the printed register of voters at the polling stations where the names of the voters shall be crossed out after identification of voters using the KIEMs Kit."

    "The Commission commits to adhere to the rule of law and will facilitate the realisation of political rights of Kenyans as is capitulated in Article 38 of the constitution in order to deliver a free, fair and credible election," Chebukati stated at the time. 

    The Azimio coalition led by Raila Odinga had initially threatened to boycott the Tuesday, August 9 poll, if the commission omitted the use of the printed register. 

    He advocated that the electoral agency ought to use the manual register as a backup should the KIEMS kits fail to operate. 

    "That is why we are saying that there must be a manual register at every polling station, it is not negotiable. We are telling the IEBC they must have a manual register along with the biometric identification of voters on that day; failure to which, there will be no election," he argued at the time.

    DP Ruto, however, defended the commission- faulting his rivals for shifting their focus on the commission as opposed to soliciting votes from Kenyans. 

    "Stop frustrating IEBC. Focus on seeking votes you are not competing with IEBC. Come and meet us face to face. We will defeat you very early in the morning. We want you to respect independent commissions," Ruto stated during a past tour in Turkana County. 

    IEBC Chair Wafula Chebukati receives the first batch of the printed ballot papers on July 7, 2022.
    IEBC Chair Wafula Chebukati receives the first batch of the printed ballot papers on July 7, 2022.
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