Kenya’s electoral body seeks to register 6 million new voters

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Kenya’s electoral body says it is aiming to register around six million new voters in its mass voter registration that will begin on January 16.

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) Chief Executive Officer Ezra Chiloba on Monday said the authority is targeting young Kenyans who just recently obtained identification cards.

Kenyans get IDs upon attaining the age of 18 years.

Chiloba said that about nine million Kenyans have obtained IDs but are yet to register as voters.

The IEBC’s aim is to register 22 million voters, five million voters more than those that had been registered as of June 2016.

Chiloha said the electoral authority will have a provisional register printed by March 15.

Kenya will go to the polls on August 8, and President Uhuru Kenyatta will seek a second term in office.

The country’s opposition claims the government of plotting to rig the elections, accusations that follow the passing of a bill allowing “alternative back-up mechanism.”

The government however says the back-up mechanism is necessary for cases where the electronic system fails.