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What to expect as you go into polling stations today

Voters have been queuing at polling stations from 6:00 a.m. to cast their ballots.

Voters queued at Lower Kabete Primary School in Nairobi during the 2022 General Election [Photo. Victor Kiprop]

Kenyans are today going to the polls to decide who forms the next government, with the General Election covering six elective seats: president, governor, senator, county woman representative, member of National Assembly and ward representative.

Officials of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), in most parts of the country, were able to open polling stations on time, with only a few isolated incidents of delay in Mombasa.

Political leaders have led the charge, turning up to cast their ballots as early as 6:00 a.m. when voting began. Deputy President William Ruto, Senior Counsel Martha Karua and Mathira MP Rigathi Gachagua were among the first politicians to cast their votes before 7:00 a.m. on Tuesday.

Here are a few things voters can expect as they go into polling stations:

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Voters can expect to take up to 10 minutes to go through the voting process, mostly due to hithes with biometric voter identification.

MP Gachagua was among voters whose details could not be retrieved by the KIEMS kits, causing IEBC officials to utilize the manual voters' register.

Due to internet connectivity issues as well, IEBC officials in Changamwe constituency - Mombasa experienced up to two-hour delays in kicking off the voting process at polling stations.

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IEBC has advised voters to retrieve the details of their voting streams at the polling centres to avoid queuing at the wrong lines.

Presidential running mate Karua was one of the voters whose details could not be found on one stream and had to be transferred to another stream before she could vote.

By sending one's IDnumber#YearOfBirth to USSD code 70000 a voter can easily receive details of their voting station, including the stream to report to once at the polling station.

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The Returning Officer at Rongai constituency, Nakuru on Tuesday morning suspended the National Assembly election after a mix-up with ballot papers.

After the Rongai suspension, there are now four constituencies where MNA elections would be done at a later time. The other three are Kitui Rural, Pokot South and Kacheliba whose ballot papers had errors.

Mombasa and Kakamega gubernatorial elections have also been suspended due to errors on ballot papers.

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