Saturday, Jan 31st 2015

Why Did 'Rejected' Come Third In Poll?

Wednesday, March 6, 2013 - 00:00 -- BY STAR EDITOR

IF there was a third candidate called 'Rejected', he would have come third in the presidential election behind Uhuru Kenyatta and Raila Odinga.

His 300,000 votes, at the time of writing, represented over 6 per cent of the votes cast. In some countries, spoiled ballots are actually protest votes where the citizen wants to make his or her displeasure felt.

But in Kenya on Monday, these spoiled ballots were almost certainly intended as votes for one or other of the presidential candidates. The citizen who made mistake on the ballot has therefore been disenfranchised; the vote he or she wished to cast has been invalidated.

Another undemocratic aspect of these spoiled ballots is that they will reduce the percentage vote of the leading candidates. They are counted as 'cast' votes of which the winning candidate has to get 50 per cent plus one.

These spoiled ballots could then be responsible for forcing the election into a run-off, something that might be very confusing for the ordinary citizen.

Voters may have been confused by multiple ballot papers, or by the colour and design of the ballots and boxes. Whatever the reason, the IEBC needs to conduct an urgent analysis to find out what went wrong.


Quote of the day: "I guess I should warn you, if I turn out to be particularly clear, you've probably misunderstood what I said." - Former Federal Reserve chairman Alan Greenspan was born on March 6, 1926