Heavy rains delay voting

Voting was delayed in some polling stations across the country following heavy rains that pounded the country Wednesday night and Thursday.

Transportation of voting material was delayed while vehicles got struck in some areas as some roads were rendered impassable and others cut off.

Roads were cut off in Laikipia, Wajir and Embu, hampering the movement of voters and ballot papers.

In Embu, voting had not started by 10am at Muthithu polling station, Mbeere South constituency after the vehicle transporting ballot materials got stuck in the mud at night.

A police Land Cruiser sent from Kiritiri Market to rescue the electoral agency team Thursday morning also got stuck in a seasonal river.

There was panic when the police vehicle was swept for five metres by the raging waters in the river near Ndungune.

INSCAR Heavy rains delay voting

A police vehicle stuck in the middle of a flooded seasonal river in Mbeere South constituency. Officers were on the way to rescue a team of electoral agency officials who were stuck. PHOTO | CHARLES WANYORO | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Voting at some polling stations in Laikipia County was also delayed for hours following heavy rains that pounded the region on Wednesday night.

Laikipia North Constituency was the most affected with Returning Officer Njeru Mbogo saying he was yet to receive confirmation from some 40 centres on delivery of voting materials by 8am.

The constituency has 128 polling stations.

“Some of our vehicles were stranded for hours after they found seasonal rivers had flooded and had to wait for the waters to subside,” Mr Mbogo told the Nation on phone.

Wajir County Retuning Officer Patrick Gatuma said the rains made some roads impassable and that they were planning to organise for a plane from Nairobi to help transport materials to these centres.

PLANE

Only two voters had voted by 7 am at Wajir High School polling station.

The same situation was witnessed in Wagberi Primary School and Baraza Park polling stations.

In Mandera, the County Returning Officer (RO) David Maro Ade said the delay in delivering voting materials to Mandera was due to lack of a plane with a wider opening to load the batch for
the county.

Voting was also delayed for three hours in some polling stations of Kitui Central after a school bus distributing materials was swept into a ditch by flash floods.

Ballot papers and Kiems identification kits for several polling stations within Kitui Township area were among the election materials damaged after they got soaked in water when the bus veered off the road near Majengo area.

ROUTES

By 10am, IEBC officials were racing to provide other materials for Majengo, Muslim primary, Kitui central primary, Maendeleo and Manyenyoni polling stations.

A heavy downpour hampered transportation of voting materials in several other parts of Kitui central, Kitui west and some sections of Kitui east, causing delays where most polling stations in the affected areas opened between 9am and 10am.

In Garissa the heavy rains rendered most roads impassable delaying delivery of voting material.

Garissa county police Commander David Kirina confirmed some polling stations are yet to receive their materials and electoral officials assisted by the police are looking for alternative routes.

Areas affected by the rains includes parts of Ijara Constituency, Dadaab’s Hamey area, Liboi, Dertu and Fafi.

Reporting by Bruhan Makong, Manase Otsialo, Mwangi Ndirangu, Charles Wanyoro, Kitavi Mutua and Abdimalik Hajir.

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