The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) yesterday gave assurances that its move to abandon the use of a physical register and instead identify voters electronically will not disenfranchise some of them.
This emerged as the electoral body sealed the final voters, who will be eligible to take part in the August 9 General Election.
IEBC chairperson, Wafula Chebukati, explained that the move to ditch the physical register for a digital one was geared to guarding against malpractices witnessed in the 2017 polls.
This assurance came after stakeholders, led by Azimio presidential candidate Raila Odinga’s agent Paul Mwangi, raised concerns over integrity of the voter’s register, lack of a backup or complementary system in case of technology failure and safeguards put in place of challenges.
IEBC Chief Executive Officer Marjan Hussein Marjan said the use of digital register will allow legitimate voting while easily identifying any illegitimate voting.
He said use of physical register allowed some rogue IEBC officers to manipulate the register either by deleting names of voters or loading names of those who have not voted, to vote for others.
On technology failure, Marjan assured that the Kiems kits will have four backup kits in each of the 1,450 wards.
The electoral agency has 58,100 kits ready for use in the 46,232 polling stations that will be used in the August 9 elections.
Chebukati said the final register will be gazetted on Wednesday will include voters’ county per county, constituency and ward.
The final register has 22,120,458 voters that is the number of registered voters who will participate in 2022 polls.
Nonetheless, Marjan said the use of biometrics identification during election will mitigate the risk of illegitimate voters to vote.