Kenya: Political Parties’ Online Register Out End of October to Enhance Transparency

Nairobi — The Registrar of Political Parties, Anne Nderitu, has said that her office intends to undertake the registration of political parties membership online to enhance accessibility for the public.

Nderitu said the process will be undertaken through the e-citizen platform and other web-based systems.

Speaking during the launch of the mass voter registration for institutions of higher learning at the University of Nairobi on Tuesday, Nderitu said that the move will give Kenyans a chance to check their status periodically and an opportunity to inspect the political parties’ register.

“The purpose of doing that is that there have been complaints from a section of Kenyans saying that they do not have access to the register to confirm of they are registered as members of political parties. Others feel that probably they may want to resign from one political party to join another,” she said.

Currently, the process is undertaken manually.

The political parties’ registrar added that it was important for Kenyans to continuously check their details as provided in the political parties’ act which says the register should be publicly available.

Nderitu said the online register will be ready and operational by October.

“We intend to do this by close of this month. By November 1, we should have that online service for registration of political parties. We have engaged with the 75 registered political parties and other political parties that we are registering that this is the way to go,” she stated.

She further called on the youth in Kenya to come out in large numbers to register to vote in the ongoing listing by the Independent and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).

“Gone are the days when political registration was done on the streets, we are now seating on the negotiating table to decide our future. Participation in elections starts with voter registration. I want to appeal to you, let us as much as possible look into the question of how we participate in this issue,” she stated.

Kenyans will go to a General Election in August 2022.

She expressed concerns that out of a register of 18 million voters in the country, only 7 million are young people yet the majority of the population are the youth.

“I think it is high time the youth have a political awakening. The youth are the agents of growth,” she said, “It’s upon the young people of this country to wake up and present their issues on the table.”

IEBC Chief Executive Officer Marjan Marjan who also spoke at the event, stated that the continuous voter registration exercise in the country has been in existence but the commission has been facing challenges due to lack of adequate funding.

Marjan stated that in 2017 elections, the registered voters between 18-35 years were about 48 per cent adding that 4.5 million new ID’s have been issued to date.

“This time as youth we need to increase the number of representatives for different seats and you can achieve this by registering first. If you are registered as a voter, it means you are interested in democracy,” he said.

Juliana Cherera, IEBC Vice Chairperson stated that voter registration exercise will only take 30 days insisting that the period will not be extended.

The commission is targeting to register an additional 6 million voters’ majority of whom are youth ahead of the 2022 election.

Sam Kona, the National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) Commissioner urged the youth to be peace ambassadors even as they register as voters.

“This is an opportunity for the youth to make their voices heard from the lowest position to the top. I want you to take this opportunity as young people to determine how our elections will turn out to be,” Kona said.


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