The registration of prisoners as voters that kicked off on Tuesday this week has been marred by the challenge of lack of identity cards among inmates.
South Rift Independent Electoral Boundaries Commission (IEBC) coordinator Charles Mutai said they have not been able to achieve much because remandees and prisoners do not have identity cards.
There are six correctional facilities in Kericho, Bomet and Narok counties with an estimated population of 3,000 inmates.
So far, Mutai said, only 23 inmates have been registered as voters.
The officer in-charge of Narok prison, Narok Prison has 450 prisoners, James Nyamosi, said the department of registrar of persons had visited the facility to assist inmates who lost their identity cards get replacements.
“The department of registrar of persons has promised that the identity cards will be ready in two to three days,” he said.
An identity card is a requirement of the law for one to register as a voter in the country.
This year will for the first time to see inmates participate in elections but unlike other civilians, they will only cast theirs for the presidential candidates.
This exercise comes just days after the conclusion of the mass voter registration with data from IEBC indicating that 3.7 million new voters were netted against a target of 6.1 million.
The Supreme Court had ruled that all eligible Kenyans are entitled to vote in the 2017 General Election.
This compelled the IEBC to recently announce the gazettement of all prisons as registration centres and then proceeded to roll out the exercise from February 20 to 27, 2017.
The IEBC seeks to register 19,479 prisoners out of the 49, 867 in the 118 incarceration facilities countrywide and only those with IDs will be registered.
The genesis of the push for voting rights of prisoners began soon after the promulgation of the Constitution in 2010 where in a historic judgment, the court held that prisoners had the right to vote in the referendum.
Meanwhile, the prisons department has raised concern over voter registration apathy among inmates in various institutions.