Public pressure forces IEBC to rectify erratic voter verification platform
Hawk-eyed Kenyans pushed the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) to rectify its newly launched SMS voter verification platform after errors were discovered on the first day of the exercise.
Kenyans online published screenshots of erratic details received after sending non-valid ID numbers to the 70000 short code.
The commission’s Communications and Public Affairs Manager Andrew Limo on Thursday told Nairobi News that the IT department was working on the new platform urging Kenyans not to panic.
Hours after the errors were pointed out, SMS queries of invalid ID numbers had a response stating, “Kindly visit the nearest IEBC office to verify your details.”
In a detailed statement issued on Thursday evening signed by the commission chairman Wafula Chebukati, IEBC said the accuracy of the voter register depends on the verification exercise as well as the recommendations by KPMG after the audit.
“We wish to clarify that the accuracy of the 2017 the register of voters depends on the implementation of the outcome of the verification exercise that was undertaken between May 10 – June 9, 2017 and the recommendations by KPMG following the audit of the register of voters,” stated Mr Chebukati.
Some Kenyans who used the new SMS verification platform had said their details as per the commission’s revers SMS were inaccurate while others accused IEBC of having ‘fake voters.’
“We have also noted with concern some social media reporting that borders on deliberate misinformation on the actual state of the register of voters. We urge caution when it comes to freedom of expression on issues of the register at this point in time,” Mr Chebukati added.
The number of registered voters in the country stands at 19,611,423 while the audit revealed that the register of voters had 171,476 records that had invalid IDs and the number of dead voters updated to 88,602.
“The Commission wishes to assure the public that the mode of identification of voters on the Election Day shall be biometric identification using the KIEMS technology. With this system in place, we do not expect any foul play in the voting process,” Chebukati assured.