IEBC chairperson Wafula Chebukati at the Bomas of Kenya on July 19, 2022 during a technology simulation exercise. [Samson Wire, Standard]

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) on Friday agreed to discard the second booklet of Form 34A that sparked protests from Azimio la Umoja-One Kenya Party.

The commission’s chairperson Wafula Chebukati assured the presidential candidates’ agents that the controversial booklet won’t be used in the August 9 polls.

The United Democratic Alliance (UDA) Party had also written to the IEBC, seeking clarification on the role of the second Form 34A in the August 9 General Election.

On Friday, Chebukati met representatives of presidential candidates William Ruto (UDA), Raila Odinga (Azimio la Umoja-One Kenya), George Wajackoyah (Roots Party) and David Mwaure (Agano Party) at the Bomas of Kenya in Nairobi.

On Wednesday, July 27 Azimio la Umoja raised questions on the printing of Forms 34A and 34B by a Greek firm contracted by the IEBC.

Raila Odinga said in a letter signed by Azimio’s chief legal adviser, Paul Mwangi, that his team discovered “disturbing issues” after learning that the IEBC printed two booklets of Forms 34A.

Azimio also expressed concern that the IEBC was not printing Forms 34B, into which polling station results recorded in Forms 34A are collated.

Mwangi said they sought clarification from IEBC commissioners during a visit to the printer in Greece, and the explanation given was that extra Forms 34A were needed in each polling station so that copies could be shared with election observers, media and other stakeholders.

“We, however, reject this explanation. Firstly, because Book 2 of 2, from which it is alleged copies for stakeholders will be obtained, is more than just a copy. It is, actually, a set of fully-fledged Forms 34A complete with all security features similar to those in Book 1 of 2. A Form 34A from Book 2 of 2 satisfies every requirement of electoral laws and regulations and can be used as a substitute,” said Mwangi.

Under election regulations, Form 34A is used to tabulate results of the presidential election and is filled by the Presiding Officer after counting votes at the polling station.

The details of votes obtained by each candidate are filled in, as well as total number of registered voters.

The form also details the rejected, objected, disputed and valid votes. The candidates or their agents are then required to sign and ratify that the contents of the form are correct.

Forms 34A gained notoriety in the 2017 polls after they were cited as one of the reasons for the cancellation of the presidential election outcome.

Odinga, who was contesting on a NASA ticket, challenged the results because some of the forms were not signed.