Study: 3.2 million voters, especially youth, plan to snub election in August

70 per cent of the respondents opined that members of parliament are only interested in youth's votes.

 

The poll results released in Nairobi, show that more than 10.9 per cent of Kenyan youth are very unlikely to take part in the election. The youth have accused the incumbent political leaders of negligence and also cite “disillusionment with the current crop of elected leaders”.

In the poll, another 6.4 percent are doubtful of their participation in the exercise, bringing the total percentage of those unlikely to participate in the election to 17.3 per cent.

“The survey findings clearly reveal a highly educated youth that are greatly disillusioned with the current crop of elected leaders and as a result are reluctant to take part in the election,” Jessica Musila, the executive director of Mzalendo Kenya told journalists.

Musila said most of the respondents say the situation was borne out of the “frustrations” and “inaccessibility” of elected representatives, mostly Members of Parliament (MPs).

“From the results, it was clear the current crop of elected leaders were generally perceived as self-interested in pursuing votes and do not care about the public’s opinions on issues,” Musila said.

Self-interests MPs

A whooping 70 per cent of the respondents, the survey say, opined that members of parliament are “only interested in their votes and not in their” while another 65 per cent say the “lawmakers are not bothered by what the public think.”

On the other hand, 55 per cent of those polled said that they have had a good understanding of the political system in Kenya and therefore can affect legislation in Parliament.

Musila argued that the respondents, who form part of the electorates,  are aware of when the next General Election will be, their local constituencies and parliamentarians’ names, contrary to recent claims that the youth online are disinterested in politics.

The survey, which sampled 8,300 respondents, was conducted between October 1 and November 15, 2016 through Facebook advertisements across Kenya. Of the respondents whose ages pinned at 26 years, 58 per cent have attended university.

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