Uhuru signs election laws to allow use of manual back up in August poll


President Uhuru Kenyatta with other national leaders during the signing of the election laws that allows use of manual back-up in the August poll at State House, Monday, December 9. /PSCU

President Uhuru Kenyatta on Monday signed the controversial Election Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2015 into law at State House, Nairobi.

The assent now allows IEBC to use a manual back-up to the electronic voting system in the August 8 general election.

The laws, passed by the senate on Thursday last week, have been assented to amid threats by the Opposition to call for mass action.

According to Statehouse spokesman Manoah Esipisu, the President singed the bill following the approval by a majority of senators.

Present during the signing was Speaker of the National Assembly Justin Muturi, Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen and Majority Leader Aden Duale.

Also present was Solicitor General Njee Muturi and Clerk of the National Assembly Justin N Bundi.

The opposition had claimed a manual voting system will allow ghost voters to participate in this years poll, and termed the laws a plot by Jubilee to rig the scheduled poll.

The claims have been dismissed by the Jubilee administration as well as the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission.

IEBC CEO Ezra Chiloba said voters will be identified electronically, and that the manual system will only be used in the event that the former fails.

Despite Cord senators fighting hard to compel senate not to pass the laws, their Jubilee counterparts put up a spirited fight to ensure the same sailed through.

An accumulative total of 26 Jubilee senators voted in favour of the Bill compared to 19 Cord legislators who opposed it.

“Besides the complimentary voting mechanism, there are new insertions in the amended Bill including the requirement for MPs and MCAs to have a degree from a recognized university from before they can seek being elected into office,” PSCU said in a statement on Monday.


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