Lamu residents blame leaders for low voter registration turn out in the area


Lamu, KENYA: Lamu residents have faulted leaders for failing to conduct voter mobilization  in the ongoing mass voter registration exercise like their fellow counterparts in other counties.

Lamu continues to record dismal numbers in the exercise with residents blaming the situation on lack of mobilization from local leaders.

Many of the centers especially in Lamu east have been reported to record as low as only two people daily with other centers going without registering a single person.

Only 2,175 new voters have been registered in the entire county even as the exercise enters its second week.

Residents have complained that local leaders aren’t doing much to woo voters and said there was need for residents to be encouraged to do so.

“Look at Mombasa for instance,the way governor Hassan Joho and the likes of Mishi Mboko are going round towns and villages telling people to go register as voters.In Lamu,we even have no idea where our leaders are,we haven’t seen any of them since the exercise started.Maybe things would be a bit different if they went out to the people,”said Hassan Abdullahi.

So far Lamu East Sub-County has the least number of voters with only 485 residents registered.

According to North Coast Elections Coordinator Amina Soud, very few people still visit the various registration centers more especially in Basuba and Kiunga Wards since the exercise kicked off a week ago.

A total of 126 Voter Registration Assistants (clerks) are currently conducting the exercise in Lamu with 88 of them in LamuWest Sub-County while 38 are in Lamu East.

In Lamu West, IEBC dispatched 44 BVR kits while 19 BVR kits were dispatched in Lamu East.

According to Mrs Soud, IEBC is targeting to register a total of 20,430 new voters in the ongoing exercise.

Most centers have reported failure of the BVR kits with woman rep Shakilla Abdalla, terming it a plot to sabotage the exercise and the elections too.