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Civil society say kpmg's voter register audit methods inefficient

By Akello Odenyo | April 21st 2017
Kenya Human Rights Commission Director George Kegoro.

A coalition of civil society organisations has criticised the proposed audit of the voters’ register.

The coalition, dubbed Kura Yangu Sauti Yangu (KYSY), poked holes in the method that KPMG, intends to use to carry out the audit.

The group said KPMG’s audit will be limited in its utility because it will only be able to provide information on whether or not those in the register are eligible to be included.

“It will not be able to substantively comment on people’s lived experiences with registration or on how voter registration problems are disenfranchising parts of the population,” said Kenya Human Rights Commission (KHRC) director George Kegoro.

He said KPMG’s audit methodology fails to mitigate mistrust about the independence and impartiality of the authority responsible for compiling the register (IEBC) or to address a lack of public confidence in the legitimacy of the register.

The group comprises KHRC, Independent Medico-Legal Unit, Constitution and Reforms Education Consortium, the Africa Centre for Open Governance, Civil Society Organisation Reference Group, Inuka Trust, Katiba Institute, Freedom House and the International Commission of Jurists (Kenya chapter). They claimed KPMG’s methodology largely involves desk reviews and cross-checking of data against national databases and hence fails to capture the most contentious issues surrounding the register of voters.

“Relying on these databases potentially leaves out people who live in remote areas and nomads whose information may not be contained in these databases in case their birth is not included in the register of births,” said Kegoro.

He said KPMG will be unable to provide information on the calibre and background of those hired for the assignment.

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