Oct 21, 2021

Mawazo Writing Africa

Writing about the main

Rift Valley tops in new voter registration, Mt Kenya trails

Only a fraction of the elected voters in the region had turned up for registration since the Independent Electoral and Borders Commission (IEBC) launched national elections on October 4th.

Kiambu, Nyeri, Murang ‘ a, Embu, Kirinyaga, Laikipia, Mombasa, Nairobi and Kitui are among the weakest counties.

Eight counties from Rift Valley and Northern Kenya have so far recorded the highest percentage of registered voters, albeit still well below the IEBC- Projections. Samburu, Elgeyo-Marakwet, West Pokot, Nandi, Baringo, Tana River, Narok, Wajir, Turkana and Mandera recorded the highest numbers.

Vice President William Ruto enjoys massive support in seven out of ten counties that have the highest combined percentages of 43% within the first week of registration.

The counties of Nairobi and Mombasa, where ODM leader Raila Odinga has a large following, registered only four and two percent of the target people, respectively Voters or Kitui County, which forms the political base of wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka, also performed below average.

The latest IEBC data show that 202,518 new voters were registered in the last seven days, which is well below the expected target of 1.5 million.

The 30-day campaign is targeting around six million new voters before the parliamentary elections in 2022.

IEBC chairman Wafula Chebukati yesterday demanded the Sta at and other interested parties to help mobilize eligible voters to register voters.

Mr. Chebukati blamed the slow progress made by voter apathy and insecurity in some parts of the country. “The Commission will continue to seek solutions to these identified challenges in collaboration with all stakeholders in the electoral process,” he said. The IEBC chief also noted the lack of national identity cards and the culture of the last-minute rush as further reasons for the low turnout.

“In 2017 the commission found that the Kenyans were not making the best use of the early days to register. The result was a mud frenzy and long queues in the last few days until the end of the registration drive. Let’s reverse this trend by removing the “last minute rush” label, ”said Chebukati.

In the run-up to the August 2017 elections, there were over 19 million registered voters. The IEBC hopes to register more than 25 million voters by the end of the ongoing exercise.

Tana River was among the counties with the highest percentage of goals achieved in a week. In the past election campaigns, counties from Mt. Kenya and Luo Nyanza, supported by their regional kings, reached the top in voter registration.

Telltale sign

But with the resignation of President Kenyatta on At the end of his second term, could this be a telltale sign of how high the turnout could be in the 2022 elections for a region that will not have a strong candidate?

Mr Odinga has yet to express his interest in the Elections, although he had several meetings with business and political leaders from Mount Kenya and held rallies to promote his vision for the country.

It is unclear whether his delay in announcing his candidacy is the Could be the reason for the slow progress in his Nyanza backyard. Samburu tops the top 10 counties with the highest registered numbers at eight percent, albeit still bleak at 2,128, compared to the weekly target of 27,059.

The commission has 7,720 biometric voter registration kits nationwide for the campaign used. A total of 4,350 kits were distributed at the stations. There is also a university and college student registration kit in each constituency.

The commission has also set up 52 kits in Huduma centers, 128 in “large counties” and 2,900 as a backup in case some fail.

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