By Margaret Kalekye
NAIROBI, Feb 16 (NNN-KBC) — Kenya’s Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has kicked off the much-awaited mass voter registration exercise in readiness for the 2017 general election.
The registration exercise began Monday across the country at designated registration centres in every County Assembly Ward and will run until March 15, 2016. The 30-day exercise will take place daily, including weekends.
The launch of the registration drive, which targets an estimated eight million new voters in two phases, got underway in Nairobi at the Pumwani Social Hall in the Kamukunji constituency.
The exercise will involve the registration of new eligible voters, transfer of voters who are already registered but wish to change their polling stations, and verification of the register for already registered voters.
IEBC communication and corporate affairs manager Tabitha Mutemi said in a media statement that the Commission had deployed 5,756 Biometric Voter Registration (BVR) kits and a corresponding number of Voter Registration Assistants (VRAs) to conduct the exercise at County Assembly Wards (CAWs) across the country.
The schedule for distribution of BVR kits for the registration exercise is available on the IEBC website. The commission has further refuted claims of bias in distribution of voter registration kits favouring areas perceived as supporting the ruling Jubilee coalition.
“The notion that some perceived opposition regions received less BVR kits than perceived Jubilee strongholds is misleading,” said IEBC Chairman Issack Hassan.