Lamu, KENYA: Only 30% of Lamu residents have been registered as voters,this is according to Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) statistics of the just concluded voter registration exercise in the area.
This has emerged even as the month long voter registration exercise in the county by IEBC comes to a close.
According to IEBC Coast Coordinator Amina Soud who spoke on Sunday, only 3,942 people had been registered in the entire county.
Soud said the figure is way below the anticipated figure by IEBC of 15,000 voters.
She said registering clerks who have been conducting the exercise had complained of low turnout of those who came out to register.
“We only have 30% registered Lamu voters which is about 3,942 whereas we had expected to register atleast 15,000.Despite the voter education we did,very few people turned out,” said Soud.
She denied that the low turnout was due to lack of information concerning when and where the exercise would be conducted.
“IEBC together with community organizations and MUHURI undertook the voter education exercise.We even had it announced on radio and so it’s not logical for one to say they didn’t know about the exercise,”said Soud.
A section of locals however said they had failed to register since they had been ‘denied ‘ Identification Cards-IDs.
“How could we register when they have refused to give us IDs.If they give us we shall be glad to register and vote in 2017,”said Shee Abdullahi.
In August,2015,the national government resumed issuance of IDs in Lamu after a yearlong halt due to security challenges.