The Star (Nairobi)

29 November 2012

Kenya: Mijikenda Kaya Elders Plan Voter Listing Walk

 The electoral commission has not started registering Kenyans with waiting cards as the president is yet to assent to the bill that authorizes ... ( Resource: Kenyans With Waiting Cards Yet To Be Registered.

MIJIKENDA Kaya elders have planned a walk in Malindi to educate Kilifi county residents on the need to register as voters ahead of the general election on March 4.

The Malindi District Cultural Association, which doubles as the elders secretariat, yesterday expressed disappointment at the low turnout in the voter registration in the county.

Speaking in Malindi yesterday, the elders' council secretary Joseph Mwarandu said they have resolved to walk to all the wards in the region to persuade people to register.

"We have decided as a council to walk to all the wards between December 7 and 13 and sensitise our people on the importance of registering as voters because we are worried by the low turnout being experienced," he said.

The council also plans to preach peace during and after the elections in the Coast region, which has experienced a low turnout at most registration centres.

Mwarandu's announcement comes only a day after Kilifi senator's seat aspirant Naomie Cidi claimed the process had not picked up in many areas in the county, sentiments that were downplayed by Malindi Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission coordinator Hamisi Tsumo.

Chidi, who is the former Kenya Airports Authority deputy director, claimed there was only one operational Biometric Voter Registration kit in Langobaya division even as Tsumo insisted that the commission had enough machines and the low turnout cannot be blamed on IEBC.

Tsumo said the commission had 53 BVR kits out of the total 58 registration centres in Malindi constituency even as concerns of low voter turnout and lack of adequate kits were being raised by local leaders in the six counties of the province.

Mombasa county senator hopeful Hassan Mwakimako said Kwale and Mombasa counties are among the regions in Coast where residents are reluctant in listing themselves as voters ever since the process was launched by President Mwai Kibaki last week.

By end of the first week only about 228,000 voters had been listed in Coast as the region was among the hardest hit by poor turnout in the country.

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