October 17 poll schedule out

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has released a revised timetable of activities lined up ahead of the October 17 repeat presidential election.

The activities include the revised elections results framework, certification of the voters’ register, upgraded technology for elections, recruitment, training and deployment of staff, voter education and Election Day operations.

IEBC chairman Wafula Chebukati, while releasing the timetable, said the commission had submitted to the National Treasury a draft budget for consideration, and called on the ministry to expeditiously allocate funds to allow for implementation for key tasks ahead, especially those related to ICT and training.

AGENTS

In the schedule, IEBC also advised parties on deployment of agents.

“It is crucial for candidates to deploy experienced and committed agents to all parts of the country to enhance accountability and transparency during the electoral process,” Mr Chebukati said in the statement.

He said observation from the bungled August 8 election reveal that political parties did not coordinate the deployment of their agents and there were none in some locations.

He urged the candidates to ensure their agents are well versed with technology to be used and finalise the list of the agents for the polling stations, constituency and the national tallying centrE and submit the same to the respective offices before October 3.

CODE OF CONDUCT

The commission has already recruited the 290 Constituency returning Officers and their deputies, a process that ended Friday and they have until Tuesday to sign the code of conduct.

There will be a review of polling station and tallying centres from September 13 to 18 before they are gazetted on September 19, while political parties will have to appoint their constituency chief agents by October 3.

Under the law, the presidential results announced at the constituency by the Returning officers are final and can neither be altered or changed by the commission.

According to the timetable, the Commission has set aside seven days starting September 10 to hire the 40,883 presiding officers, a similar number of deputy presiding officers.

IRREGULARITIES

Other staff to be recruited during the period include 135,038 clerks, 580 ICT support, and 290 constituency logistics assistants.

The recruitment, to be done from the commission’s existing database of applicants excluding those that may have committed irregularities during the August 8 election, ends on September 17.

The revised regulations must be gazetted by September 29, while the revised results management framework must be in place before September 20, according to the timetable.

Accreditation of observers, both domestic and international started Thursday and will run through the next 8 days, until September 17.

The timetable further provides that both President Uhuru Kenyatta and Mr Odinga, the only contestants in the poll, have eight days to sign and summit their code conduct to the commission, while the vote education will start on September 18 and go all the way to October 15, just two days before the poll.

KIEMS

The commission has further set aside 24 days to train staff on the use of Kenya Integrated Election Management systems (KIEMS).

From September 21, the electoral agency will conduct a cascaded training to October 14, three days to the polls.

The training will target returning officers, deputy returning officers, county returning officers, presiding officers, deputy presiding officers, polling clerks, ICT support clerks and all the technical staff of the commission.

Training of Diaspora polling officials will be done between October 6 and 10 before they are deployed between October 10 and 18.

The distribution of the electronic kits will start on October 1 and will go on until October 8, while the setting up of the tallying centres will start the next day, October 9 until October 14.

Simulation exercise for the KIEMS will be done on October 10 and 11.

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