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IEBC urged to have sign language interpreters at polling stations

Voters with hearing disabilities want the electoral body to provide sign language interpreters to assist them on Election Day.

They made the appeal during a stakeholders meeting at the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) regional offices in Nakuru town Monday.

Through their representative, Martin Njoroge, the deaf appealed to the IEBC to also make arrangements to assist those who cannot read and write.

He also asked the IEBC to conduct voter education for the deaf.

“I would request the commission to consider us for voter education because some of us have not been well briefed on the voting process since most voter educators do not understand sign language,” he said.

The IEBC, through County Returning Officer Silas Rotich, promised to hold a meeting with them in the next five days and address the issues raised.

“I will make consultations and see to it that we schedule a meeting for the deaf in the next five days to ensure that they are well educated on how to cast their votes during the polls,” Mr Rotich said.

However, he said it would be difficult to have a sign language interpreter at each polling station considering the time left before the General Election.

“I cannot promise that the commission will allocate an interpreter for every polling station because of time limit and the procurement process.

“But we will source for possible ways which will ensure such voters are assisted,” he said.

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