It’s all systems go for the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) in Kwale county for the August 9 polls.
The County Elections Manager Obadiah Kariuki told a press conference Sunday that the requisite voting materials have been transported to all the polling stations across the coastal county.
Kariuki said the IEBC has registered 328,316 voters in the county, with 744 polling stations and tallying centres spread in Matuga, Kinango, Lunga Lunga and Msambweni constituencies.
Kariuki said polling places will open by 6 am Tuesday and close at 6 pm.
He said the IEBC has trained and deployed all the polling agents, polling clerks and observers, ahead of the D-day.
“We have also mobilized enough security personnel for the polls and as IEBC we want to guarantee the general population that we are determined to conduct free, fair and credible elections,” he said.
The Elections manager said IEBC has already trained and equipped its personnel with basic electoral knowledge and skills and distributed sensitive and non-sensitive materials for the conduct of the election.
He said the electoral agency will ensure a peaceful and credible election and strive to meet the expectations of all stakeholders.
“It’s all systems go for the upcoming elections and it’s a process that is a cornerstone of our democracy and we are confident that we have the necessary capacity to manage the elections,” he said.
Kariuki went on, ‘we have a clear mandate of entrenching the principles of free, fair, credible, accountable and transparent elections on behalf of the people of Kenya’.
“We urge all citizens to abide by the law and conduct themselves in a manner that ensures peace reigns during and after the Tuesday election, because we need all and sundry to be agents of peace, while exercising their civic responsibility,” he said.
On his part, Kwale County Police Commander (CPC) Josephat Kinyua says the security agencies are ready to provide adequate security during the electioneering period.
Kinyua told the press that the police and other security agencies in the county were working hard to ensure a crisis-free election.
He explained that already, an effective operational order on how to provide security at each polling stations had been issued to the officers deployed for that purpose.
“We have mobilized sufficient officers to provide security before, during and after the election,” said Kinyua.
The police commander urged voters to go back home after casting their votes and wait patiently for the outcome.
“We would not like a scenario where people mill around polling stations and create unnecessary tensions,” he said.
The police chief advised leaders of political parties and candidates to impress upon their supporters to shun all forms of violence before, during and after the election.
By Hussein Abdullahi