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Kenya announces new round of voter registration ahead of polls

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- Kenya’s electoral agency will on Jan. 16 commence a new round of mass voter registration exercise ahead of the August general election, senior officials said on Monday.

Ezra Chiloba, the CEO of Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) said the month-long voter registration exercise targeting citizens who have attained eighteen years will be carried out using state of the art technology.

“We have set aside resources and supportive technology to conduct another round of voter registration exercise countrywide. We target to register between 4 to 6 million voters during this exercise,” Chiloba told reporters in Nairobi.

He revealed that the electoral agency aims to increase the number of registers voters from 15 million as of June last year to 22 million ahead of August polls.

“The training of personnel to carry out voter registration has already been completed. We have also procured digital kit to register new voters,” said Chiloba, adding that the date for general elections will not be changed.

Kenya’s electoral agency has put in place solid measures to ensure the new voter registration exercise does not experience hitches.

Chiloba said inter-agency collaboration has been enhanced to ensure eligible voters are registered to participate in the forthcoming general election.

“Besides rolling out voter education programs countryside, we have also partnered with security agencies to ensure the exercise run smoothly in volatile regions,” Chiloba remarked.

He added that verification of the new voter register will be conducted three months before the August national polls.

The Kenyan constitution stipulates that election of a president, law makers and county representatives should be conducted after five years.

Leading political parties have pledged to conduct nominations for candidates to vie for the local and national posts in early February. Pundits contend that August 2017 general elections will be hotly contested at all levels. 



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