Insecurity blamed for poor voter turnout in Vihiga County

Security concern was partly to blame for low voter turnout witnessed in the five constituencies of Vihiga County in Thursday’s repeat

presidential elections.

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) Vihiga Constituency Returning Officer (CRO), Mr. Isaack Ruto made the

observation in his brief to members of the press on Friday morning.

Ruto observed that the presidential voting exercise delayed to kick off on schedule in most polling stations across the county after IEBC

officers expressed fear of their security.

However, the commission ensured officials accessed the polling stations under heavy escort of at least two uniformed police officers

per polling station, said Ruto, adding the same security fear could be among reasons most voters failed to turnout in large numbers.

The CRO cited Mahanga village where police officers were compelled to apply some of force before dispersing a group of demonstrating youths

that had barricaded sections of the road in an attempt to deny IEBC officials entry into Mahanga Primary Polling Station.

Except for Hamisi constituency, the remaining four constituencies, Emuhaya, Vihiga, Sabatia and Luanda had submitted results by the time of

going to press.

In Emuhaya, where 41,494 registered as voters, Jubilee Party’s Uhuru Kenyatta garnered 2,300 votes against NASA’s Raila Odinga’s 157 votes.

Sabatia with 63,350 registered voters, Uhuru received 957 votes with Odinga getting 26 votes.

A total of 747 voted for Uhuru in Vihiga constituency with 36 only casting their ballot for Odinga from a constituency with 43,515

registered voters.

A similar low turnout was experienced in Luanda constituency where out of the 49.214 registered voters, 3,155 voted for Uhuru against

Odinga’s 140.

Some of the local leaders who spoke to the media, among them Maragoli Central Member of County of Assembly, Mr. Evans Chunguli and Mr. Oscar

Ndanyi, a civil society activist based in Luanda town, praised the electorate in the region for snubbing the event.

IEBC must transform itself as demanded by NASA movement before it can conduct any meaningful free, fair and credible elections, said

Source: Kenya News Agency