NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 24 – Voters whose biometric data will not be detected on the Kenya Integrated Elections Management System (KIEMS) will have their registration documents scanned before being allowed to vote.
The scanning capability of the KIEMS devices will according to Commissioner Roselyn Akombe provide a complementary mechanism for voter identification in a bid to eliminate irregularities where biometric identification fails.
However, those identified using a complementary mechanism will have to fill a Form 32 which will be used to validate them in the voter turnout count.
“KIEMS has the capacity to scan the ID and that therefore is our default in case we are unable to scan your fingerprints,” Commissioner Akombe said on Monday at a forum on election preparedness convened by Mkenya Daima under the auspices of the Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA).
The Independent and Electoral Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has also put measures in place to ensure accuracy of the results transmitted.
The KIEMS tablets have been also configured to reject entries that exceed the voter turnout in respective polling centres according to the agency’s Data Manager, Chris Msando.
“There are two results we’re transmitting; the text and the results declaration form that is scanned. In case there’s a discrepancy between the text results and the form, the form carries the day because it has been signed by all agents,” he said.
In a bid to ensure a credible voting process, Commissioner Akombe said polling officials who compromise the general election will be held criminally liable.
She said the IEBC has made it clear that no returning or presiding officer will be shielded from prosecution should they tamper with the electoral process.
“We have training countrywide going on until August 4 and we’ve been reminding our officers that unlike 2013 when they could get away with anything, this time around, the law requires that they be held individually criminally liable for anything they do at the polling stations,” said Akombe.
“We’ve made it clear to all our officers that we shall be doing ballot count at three-hour intervals and that must be consistent with the voter turnout reported by the KIEMS gadgets,” she added.
The Head of the Judiciary Committee on Elections Justice Msagha Mbogoli, who also attended the meeting, reiterated that courts will endeavour to dispense election-related matters before it expeditiously.
“The Judiciary should never be blamed for compromising the electoral system in this country and that is why we took one and a half weeks to resolve the presidential ballot printing case,” he said.
The Mkenya Daima steering committee chairperson, Vimal Shah, urged Kenyans to rally behind the electoral agency and judiciary as the two bodies discharge their mandate saying it is time voters trusted the institutions.
“I think the ultimate goal is to say let’s run the anxiety low despite what politicians saying rallying for votes. We need to get back to work on August 9 because really we have to put food on our tables,” he said.