The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has suffered a mix-up of electoral materials after Kakamega received gubernatorial ballot papers bearing names and photos of Kirinyaga candidates less than 13 hours to the polls.
The ballot papers were discovered in Mumias East sub-county, which was attributed to a mix-up in the distribution of voting papers.
“Yes it’s true that the ballot papers for Kirinyaga county were found in Mumias East. We will however issue a comprehensive statement later in the day, I hope this problem will be sorted out very soon so that we can have what belongs to us,” said the area returning officer, Joseph Ayatta.
In another case, ballot papers from Kilifi county were discovered in Mombasa county.
However, Mohamed Raka, the IEBC returning officer in Tharaka Nithi county, stated that a chopper was being deployed to transport the ballot papers to the correct county.
“There was a mix up in the distribution and packaging of the ballot papers but we have informed the Nairobi office and they are organizing a chopper to the ballot papers where they are supposed to be,” Raka said.
This year, the IEBC will spend approximately Sh1,800 per voter. This is significantly higher than what other African countries have spent on elections.
IEBC has previously defended the budget, claiming that it was required to achieve free, fair, and legitimate elections, despite persistent criticism over its supplier selection.
The commission spent a large portion of its budget on paying thousands of poll workers, ranging from registration clerks during voter registration to election authorities such as returning and polling officers.
Election materials will be moved from constituencies to polling places beginning today.
Following security intelligence of a potential disruption in Mombasa county, the Commission relocated three counting centers.
Returning Officer Swalha Yusuf confirmed the modification, which will see the primary tallying center relocated from the old Bandari College hall to Kenya School of Government.
The constituency tallying center in Changamwe has been relocated from Portreitz Kenya Medical Training College to St Mary’s Catholic, while the Likoni center has been relocated from Mtongwe Primary to Young Women’s Christian Association.
“The three tallying centres were moved because of intelligence reports over possible disruptions,” Yusuf said.