Kenya’s electoral body the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) is set to install a new electronic voter registration equipment ahead of next year’s general elections.
The government of Kenya, led by President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga, has endorsed the biometric voter registration (BVR) in preference to the manual system. This came after a consultative meeting with the IEBC.
The government has agreed to procure the BVR kits for the process, according to reports.
IEBC in a statement said it had reached a mutual agreement with the government after consultations.
“The Commission has requested that the BVR be implemented through government-to-government partnership,” IEBC stated.
At the same time, reports from the commission stated that should the government fail to deliver the IBV materials, then they will embark on plan B, which will be to hire the equipment from Ghana.
IEBC said: “We assure Kenyans that with the above arrangements, the Commission will deliver on BVR registration, as part of its commitment to deliver transparent, credible, free and fair General Elections.”
UN human rights report on 2007 post election violence (PEV) indicate that mistakes done by the former electoral body triggered conflicts between supporters of presidential hopefuls Kibaki and Odinga — of Party of National Unity (PNU) and Orange Democratic Movement(ODM) in that order.
More than 1,200 Kenyans were reportedly killed and thousands injured. More than 300,000 people were displaced while over 42,000 houses and destroying many businesses properties. Sexual assaults were also reported.
President Kibaki and Prime Minister Odinga, when they met with the IEBC commission, expressed confidence with new equipment and branded it as the way forward for restoring confidence to Kenyans ahead of the elections scheduled for March 2013.
Adoption of the equipment will mean that Kenya joins Ghana and South Africa in electronic voters registration.