By Wambui Mwaura.
According to an audit report on the registration of voters from Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), the total number of registered voters for the upcoming general election to be held on August 9th 2022 is 22,120,458 while the number of polling stations is 46,232. The IEBC audit document, gives the analysis of the final register of voters as presented by KPMG, on 16th June 2022.
There is a 12.79% increase in the number of registered voters while the number of polling stations increased by 13.08% from the previous election. IEBC recorded the number of eligible voters in 2017 as 25,212,056 while for 2022 it stands at 27,857,598, a 10.49% increase.
The KPMG report further states that the number of polling stations in 2017 was 40,883 while in 2022 general election, the number of polling stations is mentioned to be 46,232. This indicates an increase of 13.08% in the number of polling stations from the previous election. Also, the final number of registered voters in 2017 stood at 19,611,423, while in 2022 the figure is mentioned by the electoral body to be 22,120,458. This shows an increase in percentage in the number of registered voters by 12.79%. IEBC recorded the number of eligible voters in 2017 as 25,212,056 while for 2022 it stands at 27,857,598. This indicates an increase of 10.49%.
The document also highlights the diaspora voter registration evolution. The number of registered voters in the diaspora in 2017 was 4,223, as compared to 10,444 registered voters in 2022. That indicates an increase in number of registered voters in the diaspora.
Registration of Kenyans living is diaspora constitutes 0.05% of the register of voters. According the IEBC report, the commission used several criteria’s to map registration centres. These include:
- The presence of a Kenyan Mission (Embassy, High Commission or a consulate) as stipulated in law.
- The number of registered citizens with Kenyan Missions in host countries.
- Political environment in host governments which should be conducive, stable and predictable.
- Financial sustainability to support logistical, operational and administrative costs of carrying out such an activity.
The IEBC Voter registration in 2017 was conducted in 5 countries that is, Bujumbura in Burundi, Arusha and Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, Kigali in Rwanda, Kampala in Uganda and Pretoria in South Africa. Moreover the number of countries that are listed to participate in 2022 elections are 12 countries as illustrated above.
The report also mentions inclusiveness of the register of voters. It looks at the inclusivity of the registration of voters with regards to age, gender, persons living with disabilities (PWDs) and geographic distribution. The following statistics are mentioned from the assessment:
- Women represent 49.12% of voters registered, and men represent 50.88% of the total voters, demonstrating that women are still under represented in the register of voters.
- The number of youths (18-34 years old) registered to vote in 2022 stands at 39.84%, which is a decline of 5.27% against 2017. Further analysis of youth enrolment statistics shows that the number of registered female youth voters has declined by 7.75% in the period 2017 to 2022, while male youth enrolment has declined by 2.89%.
- The enrolment rate of People with Disabilities (PWDs) stands at 18.94% of the eligible voting population.