New Kenya team picks polls date

June 9, 2009 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 9 – The Shinyalu and Bomachoge constituency by-elections will be held on August 27.

Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC) chairman Ahmed Issack announced on Tuesday the appointment of Silvanus Ndemo Nyamora and Thomas Aggrey Okila as the Returning Officers for Shinyalu and Bomachoge constituencies respectively.

“We know the demographics that are there in the old register which we shall use for reference. If you are 18 and just gotten you identification cards and you want to register that’s fine,” he said.

He said the Commission would put in place stringent measures to curb cases of voter importation by politicians intent on manipulating the fragile system.

“We are going to have a separate register for us to make a decision whether these are imported voters or genuine voters. But where a pattern emerges that there is a consistency in importation of voters, of course we will take action.”

Mr Issack said party nominations to fill the vacant seats will to take place on the July 31,  after which successful candidates will be required to hand over their certificates to the IIEC on August 3 and 4.

While releasing a 90-day work plan for the by-elections that will run from June 1 to September 3, Mr Issack announced that for the first time in Kenya’s electoral history, transparent ballot boxes would be used in the exercises.

“If we are able to have enough of these boxes prepared by the person who was given the contract we believe we can successfully conduct a by-election using these transparent ballot boxes,” he said.

The Commission is also in the process of recruiting Deputy Returning Officers, District Elections Coordinators, Registration Officers and their Deputies for the two constituencies by Friday this week.

Thereafter, the Returning Officers, District Elections Coordinator, Registration Officers, their Deputies and a team of Commissioners shall proceed to Gucha and Kakamega Districts for purposes of taking over the Commission’s assets and lay the ground work for the by-elections.

“The Commission is also preparing a work plan for the next 20 months,” he said adding that they were also preparing proposals on electoral reforms to be presented to the Committee of Experts.


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