Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) officials photo:courtesy
The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission says the delivery election materials to clash-prone regions could pose a problem during polling day.
IEBC Commissioner Roselyn Akombe says parts of the country affected by banditry or which are prone to terror attacks may be particularly difficult to access.
The deployment of election officials to areas such as Lamu, Mandera, Wajir, Garissa, Tana River, Baringo and West Pokot counties is becoming nightmarish for the electoral body.
Consequently, electoral commission has come up with the Security Operation Plan seeking to map out the most dangerous areas and determine the resources required to cater for contingencies.
“It is our concern and that is why we have come up with Security Operation Plan, in which the commission works closely with security agencies to map out areas that require extra security,” Akombe said.
Part of the strategy involves the deployment of extra security and hiring helicopters to deliver election materials in regions where it is unsafe to use roads.
Another measure will involve re-allocating additional resources and personnel to the regions identifed.
“We are working with county security chiefs to map out the regions that require extra attention. Obviously, areas like Lamu, Mandera, Baringo and West Pokot are in our plan and we will have to fly materials and officials there,” she added.
Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinnet has pledged to provide additional security reinforcements during and after the August 8 polls. “We are up to the task. We are satisfied with the security arrangements and wish to assure Kenyans no agent will be partisan,” he said.
The police will have additional helicopters, vehicles, boats and anti-riot gear to help manage rowdy crowds.
The police have three usable helicopters and have to rely on those from Kenya Wildlife Service, Kenya Pipeline, Kengen, Kenya Power, Kenya Forest Service and other State agencies in moving troops and other resources to places of need.
More than 5,000 vehicles have been leased to the police since 2013 at undisclosed cost. Most of them will be deployed to cover the polls. All the tallying centres and polling stations will be adequately protected.