by Mercy Mwai @wangumarci The government has threatened to shut down social media during the August 8 General Election if it will affect the county’s peace and security. Consequently,6 the government has told media houses and political parties not to declare election results as the official body mandated to do so is the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).
Addressing a forum on election preparedness, bringing together police chefs, judiciary officials and the National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC), Communication Authority director general Francis Wangusi said they are aware that some of the media houses are planning to release results before IEBC releases them which he said is against the law.
He said he believes that IEBC will be able to transmit elections results electronically as they have brought in all the three mobile networks and zoned them to three regions to enable them transit the results without any hitches.
“We are telling media houses planning to release the results ahead of IEBC to stop. This is because IEBC is the only body mandated to release the results,” he said.
Wangusi made the remarks even as NCIC chairperson Francis Ole Kaparo said if need be they would shut down social media if it continues to be a threat to national security. Kaparo said the commission is already working with the CA to identify threats posed by social media platforms to ensure that they are dealt with decisively adding that a major operation on social media is currently underway.
Kaparo who said the commission is closely monitoring all groups, added that so far the commission has identified 21 WhatsApp groups that he said are spreading hate speech.
Wangusi, however, differed with Kaparo saying the Internet will not shut down but urged all the users of social media to be responsible as the commission is watching all social platforms 24 hours.