Matiang'i declares Monday a public holiday for 8 areas including Mombasa, Kakamega

Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i. [File, Standard]

Interior Cabinet Secretary (CS) Fred Matiang’i has declared Monday, August 29 a public holiday for eight election areas.

The eight areas include Mombasa County, Kakamega County, Kacheliba Constituency (West Pokot), Pokot South Constituency, Kitui Rural Constituency and Rongai Constituency (Nakuru County).

The other two areas Kwa Njenga Ward in Embakasi South Constituency, Nairobi County and Nyaki West Ward in Imenti North Constituency, Meru County.

The minister, in a press statement dated Friday, August 26, said the holiday applies to the listed areas only, and not the entire country.

“Employers around the country are requested to release their employees who are registered as voters in the listed election areas to enable them to vote,” Matiang’i said.

Voters in the listed areas will take to the ballots to elect their new leaders after elections in the areas were postponed on August 9 due to ballot papers mix-up, violence and vote delays.

In a special gazette notice, Number 9957 dated Friday, August 25, 2022, Matiang’i said: “Under the Employment Act, it is a criminal offence for any employer to fail to release their employees to vote.”

Earlier this week, Education ministry allowed the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) to use day schools as polling stations, saying the schools will only be closed for that day (Monday, August 29).

Education Cabinet Secretary (CS) George Magoha said should tallying spill over to the next day, then the IEBC will have to transfer the exercise to institutions of higher learning such as colleges and polytechnics.

Learners in boarding schools will, however, be unaffected by the elections.

Voters in Mombasa and Kakamega will elect their new governors, while those in Kacheliba, Kitui Rural, Pokot South and Rongai constituencies will elect their new MPs.

Those in Nyaki West and Kwa Njenga wards will vote in their new MCAs.

IEBC chairperson Wafula Chebukati said the process has to expedited to allow the commission finalise and gazette the list of all elected leaders in the 2022 polls.

Through the membership list, Kenyans can know which political faction takes the majority slot and which one takes the minority slot in the national, Senate and county assemblies.

At the same time, it allows the commission know which nominated people would make it to the assemblies respectively.