Technology will prevent election rigging, IEBC boss assures Kenyans

Kenya’s electoral commission the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has said it has sealed all loopholes for rigging elections and presidential candidates have nothing to fear.

IEBC chairman Isaak Hassan said the technology put in place by the IEBC ahead of the March 4 polls will seal all loopholes, making it impossible to rig the elections. The statement comes after claims by some politicians over the weekend that plans are underway by some government officials to alter election results.

Prime Minister Raila Odinga’s campaign manager Eliud Owayo is reported to have alleged that the heads of the military, the intelligence service and the civil service were part of a plot to rig the vote in favour of Uhuru Kenyatta’s Jubilee Coalition.

“The technology that we have put in place including the fingerprint scanners that authenticates a voter before they are allowed to vote will ensure that rigging is not possible,” Hassan said.

Isaak said that with the Biometric Voter Registration (BVR), the details of voters will be loaded onto the machines at the polling station and, once a voter is cleared to vote, the device will keep a record of these numbers.

“At the end of the voting, the number of voting materials given out at any particular station should match the number of cleared voters on the voter authentication system,” Hassan said.

This will ensure that the 2007 circumstances are not repeated, where the number of votes reported to have been cast from some polling stations was higher than the number of registered voters in that area.

Hassan added that, unlike in the 2007 elections, preliminary results from each polling station will be relayed in real time via SMS text messages from registered returning officers’ phones to the IEBC servers in Nairobi, thereby eradicating any chances of tampering with the results.

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