Last batch of poll kits arrives tomorrow, says electoral body

Sandra Wekesa and Victor Raballa @PeopleDailyKe

The final batch of the Kenya Integrated Elections Management Systems (Kiems) will arrive in the country tomorrow as Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has expressed confidence in its level of preparedness ahead of the August election.

The batch of 10,000 electoral kits will add up to 35,000 other gadgets that the commission targets to use in the electronic voter identification and transmission of results. IEBC director for ICT, Christopher Msando, said the technological devices will be distributed in 41,000 polling stations across the country while the remaining 4,000 will remain as backups to be used in case of any failure.

“The backup kits will be spread in the 1,450 wards to ensure everything goes as planned,” he said during a forum to discuss election preparedness and overall strategy to insulate the exercise against the threat of violent extremism and cybercrime.

Speaking in Nairobi yesterday, Msando assured Kenyans the system cannot be hacked into because their application is locked. “Even if someone was to steal the gadget, they cannot interfere with programmes or send signals to our network,” he said.

Unlike in 2013 when the kits arrived late, Msando said early arrival of the Kiems (90 days before election) will provide ample time for training of election officials.

The supplier, Safran Identity and Security, is undertaking skills transfer initiatives, including user training programmes, technical assistance as well as logistical support for the IEBC and will remain available to maintain them throughout the electoral process.

Msando said IEBC has recruited 290 constituency ICT officers to support the technology on election day. Meanwhile, the commission has assured the names of registered voters who did not verify their details during the one-month verification exercise will not be deleted.

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