International observers list issues IEBC should take care of

The observers also pointed out to issues they noticed during campaigns

NAKURU, RIFT VALLEY, KENYA - 2022/08/09: Observers from The Commonwealth observe as election officials arrange ballot papers at Nakuru Boys High School. (Photo by James Wakibia/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

International election observer missions have pointed out to the failure of Kiems kits, low voter turnout, lack of youth participation and using of state resources during campaigns as the main failures during the August 9 General Election.

The East Africa Community (EAC), the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (Igad), the Commonwealth, the African Union (AU), and the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (Comesa) observer missions released a joint statement on August 11.

“While the campaigns were largely peaceful and issue-based, hate speeches, misuse of state resources, non-adherence to campaign schedules, violence and use of criminal gangs were observed,” said Dr Ernest Bai Koroma, former president of Sierra Leone.

“The misuse of state resources created an unlevel playfield, especially for smaller campaign players. “Only 39.84 percent (8.8 million) of the total registered voters were youth, a decline of 5.17 percent from the 2017 figures”, Dr Koroma continued.

Despite explaining the challenges, the observers also listed areas in which they noticed improvement.

“The mission takes note of the remarkable improvements made by the IEBC in regard to transparency, preparations, and management of the 2022 Kenya General elections,” said EAC mission’s leader, former Tanzanian president Jakaya Kikwete.

They also lauded the Ministry of Interior for ensuring that security is well provided in all areas.

“In the observed polling stations, security personnel were present and highly professional in the discharge of their duties and responsibilities. They did not interfere with electoral processes, nor did they intimidate voters,” added Kikwete.

The observers further pointed out they were excited to notice the power and authority the judiciary has.

“By and large, there was an understanding that any disputes arising would be referred to the courts. We were reassured to hear that the judiciary commands public confidence,” said the chairperson of the Commonwealth Observer Group, Bruce Golding.

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