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March 22, 2018

Ignore rumours, no ballot paper printed, says IEBC

IEBC commissioner Roselyn Akombe and NASA deputy chief agent Norman Magaya at the Bomas of Kenya on October 3 /HEZRON NJOROGE
IEBC commissioner Roselyn Akombe and NASA deputy chief agent Norman Magaya at the Bomas of Kenya on October 3 /HEZRON NJOROGE

Dubai-based Al Ghurair has yet not started printing presidential ballot papers for the October 26 rerun, the IEBC said yesterday.

The electoral agency issued the statement to put to rest rumours the printing is almost complete.

NASA flagbearer Raila Odinga said on Wednesday that some ballots have already been printed and are stored in Industrial Area.

Speaking to the Star on the phone, commissioner Roselyn Akombe said the IEBC will accommodate all August 8 candidates who want to run again.

Those expected to be on the ballot are Jubilee’s Uhuru Kenyatta, NASA’s Raila Odinga, UDP’s Cyrus Jirongo, Ekuru Aukot (Thirdway Alliance), Michael Wainaina (independent) and Japhet Kaluyu (independent).

The others are Abduba Dida (Alliance for Real Change) and Joe Nyagah (independent).

On Tuesday, Raila sent a letter of withdrawal from forthcoming rerun to the IEBC, but hadn’t submitted an official withdrawal form 24A.

Akombe said the High Court decision on Wednesday allowing all former candidates to run again does not alter key poll timelines.

“In terms of preparation, we have looked at, we will be able to do all we need to do before that date,” she said.

“The only area to be impacted is the electronic transmission of results and we are working with our service providers on how that can be adjusted.”

The commission is training election officials to staff 40,833 polling stations.

On Wednesday, in an interview with Radio Jambo at his Karen home, Raila said the opposition has reliable information that some ballot papers had been printed and were to be stuffed in boxes during the election.

He said there is photographic evidence of Jubilee secretary general Raphael Tuju and chief agent Davis Chirchir entering a godown in Industrial Area to inspect the printing.

“If you go there right now, you will find the papers. What they wanted to do is fill them and stuff them in ballot boxes and say these are the votes,” he said.

“That is one of the reasons we withdrew. These are thieves and we cannot go to an election whose outcome is already known.”

Raila spoke a day after he withdrew, saying the IEBC has stonewalled any attempts to initiate reforms necessary for a free and fair election.

Akombe also denied claims she was considering resigning. Yesterday, multiple sources said resignations were possible. “As you can see, I’m at work,” she said.

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