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Human rights groups question IEBC’s preparedness ahead of August polls

Activists have put the Independent Electoral and Boundaries (IEBC) on the spot over its preparedness ahead of the August 2022 polls.

These organizations, which include the Angaza Movement, have critiqued the electoral body on both the lack of clarity and uncertainty of the electoral process while demanding an explanation of the supposed unauthorized entry into the voters’ register.

Other bodies that have expressed their reservations about the electoral process are Africog, Muhuri ICJ-Kenya, Haki Yetu, and the Kenyan Human Rights Commission (KHRC). They argue the recent comments by IEBC chairperson Wafula Chebukati on the irregular transfer of voters in the register could expose a security threat to the safety of voter data.

They also suggest the August 2022 polls may not be free and fair.

“We do not think the country is prepared to conduct free and fair elections. We are going to have a meeting with the IEBC chairman to seek clarification,” said David Muhombe, KHRC Executive Director.

Muhombe also expressed doubts on whether the factors that led to the nullification of the 2017 polls have been addressed.

“With almost five years to prepare, it looks like the IEBC has once more been caught napping, and is creating fears all may not be well,” added Ms. Juliet Matheka, programs manager at ICJ-Kenya.

The bodies have demanded a clear roadmap from the IEBC on a number of issues including the Electoral Technology, procurement of election equipment, unauthorized entry into Elections Technology Systems, the elections calendar, election management coordination, voter apathy, Independence of the IEBC, and results transmission

These concerns come days after Deputy President William Ruto, who is seeking to succeed President Uhuru Kenyatta, suggested a million voters from his strongholds have been deleted from the voters’ registers.

And Raila Odinga, also considered a front runner in the presidential race, has also raised a number of issues he wants addressed by the Electoral body.

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