Announce poll results via loudspeakers

Announce poll results via loudspeakers
IEBC chairman Wafula Chebukati- Photo courtesy

All Kenyans are very concerned about recent admission by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) that hackers attempted to breach its systems to steal crucial information ahead of the August 8 General Election.

It seems like the little trust that people have in IEBC systems keeps diminishing with every waking hour.

What every Kenyan is worried about is whether IEBC is up to the task of transmitting exact results as announced and verified in polling stations.

The problem that we have had in the last two elections and still grapple with has been inflated or deflated figures based on motives of individuals tasked with safeguarding electoral processes.

According to an audit by the Kriegler Commission, it was impossible to determine how some perceived strongholds registered above 100 per cent turnout during the 2007 elections.

In many cases documented, election results were announced despite missing Forms 34A and B, crucial documents that determine the verifiable outcomes of any election.

I can bet that these crooked attempts will creep back into the 2017 elections.

We can already see all the signs of a bitterly contested election. Both the ruling party and the opposition have already declared victory even before party nominations have been concluded.

A simple solution to these serious crimes can be borrowed from neighbouring Somalia.

During the recent elections in Somalia that President Abdullahi Farmaajo emerged victorious, I learnt that one mandatory requirement is for polling stations to have loudspeakers installed and that persons announcing results must always announce through the loudspeaker.

This is aimed at ensuring that all people present within a given radius of the polling station are informed promptly about the outcome.

This reduces the temptation by returning officers or those receiving results to manipulate figures.

 




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