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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA:


A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

A BASELINE SURVEY ON VOTER REGISTRATION DESIGN IN KENYA

Associate Member and Regional Resource Centre

Australian Government AusAID

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Copyright 2010 Institute for Education in Democracy (IED) Jumuia Place, Ground Floor, Lenana Road P.O. Box 43874-00100, Nairobi Tel : 2722431, 2731125-7 Fax : 2730165 E-mail : ied@iedafrica.org Website : www.iedafrica.org : www. aceproject.org/regions-en/ied

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

TABLE OF CONTENTS
Acronyms and Abbreviations.........................................................................................i List of Figures .................................................................................................................ii List of Tables ................................................................................................................. iii Acknowledgments ..........................................................................................................iv Executive summary ........................................................................................................ v CHAPTER ONE 1.1. Introduction ........................................................................................................... 1 1.2. Survey background ............................................................................................... 1 1.3. Rationale of the survey ........................................................................................ 3 1.4. Purpose of the survey .......................................................................................... 4 1.5. Objectives of the survey ...................................................................................... 4 1.6. Significance of the survey ................................................................................... 4 1.7. Limitations of the survey .................................................................................... 5 CHAPTER TWO 2.1. Introduction ........................................................................................................... 7 2.2. Linking voter registration to electoral system .................................................. 7 2.3. Overview of electoral systems............................................................................ 8 2.4. Test for the assessment and evaluation of an electoral system ..................... 9 2.5. Special features for some electoral systems .................................................... 14 2.6. Legal and administrative framework for voter registration in kenya .......... 16 2.7. Inspection of voters register in kenya ............................................................. 18 CHAPTER THREE 3.1. Introduction ......................................................................................................... 21 3.2. Target population of the survey ....................................................................... 21 3.3. Sample of the survey and sampling techniques ............................................. 21 3.4. Data collection instruments .............................................................................. 22 3.5. Instruments validity ............................................................................................ 24 3.6. Data collection procedures ................................................................................ 24 3.7. Questionnaire return rate .................................................................................. 24 3.8. Data analysis techniques .................................................................................... 24 CHAPTER FOUR 4.1. Introduction ......................................................................................................... 25 4.2. Demographic information................................................................................. 25 4.3. General information on voter registration...................................................... 28

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

4.4. 4.5. 4.6. 4.7. 4.8. 4.9.

Information on qualifications and disqualification for voter registration .. 30 Information on voter registration procedures................................................ 34 Information on voter registration system ....................................................... 41 Information on access to voter registration centers ...................................... 42 Information on inspection of voters registers ............................................... 44 Information on voter transfer........................................................................... 46

CHAPTER FIVE 5.1. Summary, Conclusions and Recommendations ............................................. 49 REFERENCES ........................................................................................ 62 APPENDICES.......................................................................................... 63 Appendix 1: Llist of the sampled constituencies .................................................... 63 Appendix 2: Survey Questionnaire............................................................................ 64 Appendix 3: Interview Guide ................................................................................... 71 Appendix 4: Sample voter registration form ........................................................... 72 Appendix 5: Anecdotes on Civil Registry adapted from the ACE Electoral Knowledge Network ........................................................... 73

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

ACRONYMS AND ABBREVIATIONS


AusAID AV ACE ADVS BV BRIDGE CoE ECK EMBs FGDs FPTP IED IIEC IIBRC IREC ID Card IPRS ROs NRB MMPR OMR PBVS PR SNTV STV TRS Australian Agency for International Development Alternative Vote Administration and costs of Elections Additional Vote System Block Vote Building Resources in Democracy, Governance and Elections Committee of Experts Electoral Commission of Kenya Electoral Management Bodies Focused Group Discussions (FGDs) First Past The Post Institute for Education in Democracy Interim Independent Electoral Commission Interim Independent Boundaries Review Commission Independent Review Commission National Identity Card Integrated Population Registration System Registration Officers National Registration Bureau Mixed Member Proportional Representation Optical Mark Reader Party Block Vote Systems Proportional Representation Single Non-Transferable Vote Single Transferable Vote Two Rounds

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

LIST OF FIGURES
Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 Figure 6 Figure 7 Figure 8 Figure 9 Figure 10 Figure 11 Figure 12 Figure 13 Figure 14 Figure 15 Figure 16 Figure 17 Figure 18 Figure 19 Figure 20 Figure 21 Figure 22 Sample Distribution of the Survey Gender of the Respondents Age Category of the Respondents Importance of Voter Registration Awareness of the Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC) Minimum Age for Voter Registration Possession of a National Identity Card ID Requirements for Voter Registration Participation of Kenyans living in the Diaspora in the Electoral Process Participation of Prisoners in the Electoral Process Computerization of Voter Registration Preference of Voters Cards with Photographs Online Voter Registration Duration for the issuance of Voters Card One identification document for Voter Registration Introduction of Electronic Voting Introduction of Advance Voting Type of Voter Registration System Voter Registration Method Participation of Voters in the inspection of the Voters Register Timeframe for inspection of the Voters Register Allowing Voter Transfer

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

LIST OF TABLES

Table 1 Table 2 Table 3 Table 4 Table 5

Respondents Highest Level of Education Important Documents to be used during voting time Preferred Distance from residential area to the Voter Registration Centres Preferred Places for Voter Registration Centers for the Inspection of the Voters Register

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
We would like to express our profound gratitude to the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID) and the Westminster Foundation for Democracy (WFD) for their financial support towards undertaking the Baseline Survey on Voter Registration Design and Regime in Kenya and publication of this report. As an associate member of the ACE Electoral Knowledge Network, IED profoundly acknowledges the ACE and BRIDGE resources and materials, which were relied on for reference in compiling this report. The survey was a highly demanding task and IED is sincerely thankful to all persons and groups who sacrificed and dedicated their valuable time in the execution of the survey. We duly acknowledge the research assistants in the 20 sampled constituencies whose hard work, diligence and flexibility were instrumental in the collection and assemblage of data and information on voter registration for this report. We also extend our earnest appreciation to all persons who devoted their time to be interviewed and those who joined the Focused Group Discussions in the sampled 20 constituencies. We also recognize and appreciate the active participation and cooperation we received from the Provincial Administration particularly from the District Officers, Chiefs, Assistant Chiefs and the Village Elders. We also profoundly acknowledge the contribution of IED staff for their invaluable assistance and team work that enabled the survey to be conducted successfully. These are: Immaculate Njenge- Kassait, Richard Nderitu, Juliet Akinyi, Mary Ndinda Mutinda, Benjamin Wambua, Josephine Muthoni, Jectone Oyugi, Collins Onsembe, Charles Okere, Evans Mureke and Hussein Hassan. We are also profoundly grateful to the Research and Dissemination team of Elizabeth Marete and Joseph Irura for the lead role they played in this exercise. We also acknowledge in a special way the contribution of Harrison Owino in analyzing the data and information for the survey and Zephaniah Aura for his expert contribution in supporting the design of the survey, reviewing the literature on voter registration, and in the compilation of the final report. I hope you will find this study and report useful and informative. Enjoy reading! Thank you. Peter Alingo Executive Director Institute for Education in Democracy

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
The Institute for Education in Democracy (IED) is a Non-Governmental Organization providing non-partisan contribution and leadership in the democratization and governance processes in Kenya and Africa region through programmes in the Electoral Process, Civic/Voter Education, Research and Dissemination. The focus of IEDs work since inception has been the provision of non-partisan, gender balanced information, and skills to empower citizens, especially those from the marginalized areas including women and youth to enable them participate effectively and efficiently in governance and democratic processes and to contribute towards the creation of positive political behaviour and culture. Provision of technical assistance to and collaboration with the Electoral Management Body (EMB) in Kenya, the Kenya Law Reform Commission, and other strategic partners, including other Electoral Management Bodies (EMBs) in the Africa region and the civil society has remained the hallmarks of IEDs contribution to democratic governance and elections and promotion of civic engagement. IED is an associate member of the ACE Electoral Knowledge Network and the ACE Regional Resource Centre for Eastern Africa Region. IED draws from the wealth of resources and materials available under ACE and BRIDGE to support its contribution towards democratic governance and elections. IEDs vision, mission and strategic goals are premised on the understanding of what peaceful positive change IED envisages for Kenya and the Africa region, and its role in bringing about the desired change. Our vision is empowered citizens and institutions engaged in democratic elections. Our mission is to promote democratic elections in Kenya and the Africa region through monitoring and observation of all aspects of the electoral and democratic processes; provision of civic/voter education; technical support to key institutions of governance; and research and advocacy It is imperative to note that for citizens to exercise their right to vote, there must be a comprehensive, current and inclusive register of voters that must be carefully maintained to ensure that each eligible citizen is registered to vote. The register of voters is essential since it helps to verify voter eligibility and to confer legitimacy on the electoral process. IED believes that the process of registration of voters is a strategic phase of the electoral process and interventions made at this phase are vital in ensuring that elections are credible, transparent, free and fair. As part of its contribution towards strengthening voter registration processes in Kenya and promoting credible, transparent, free and fair elections, IED conducted

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

a baseline survey on voter registration design and other aspects of the electoral process in Kenya in 20 sampled constituencies out of the current 210 constituencies in Kenya. The survey was conducted from 25th October 2009 to 15th November 2009. The survey was undertaken in order to: Explore ways of informing and supporting the establishment of a new voter registration design and regime in Kenya. Develop strategies to address possible voter apathy resulting from the 2007 General Elections fiasco. Establish citizens views and perceptions on the most suitable voter registration system that should be adopted. Establish citizen views and perceptions on other critical aspects of the electoral processes. The survey was conducted as part of our initiatives to support the Electoral Management Body and other stakeholders in designing a new voter registration system and regime in Kenya. It was also meant to inform and support reforms on other critical aspects of the electoral process in Kenya. In other words, the survey intended to inform and support the on-going electoral reforms in Kenya. Thus the purpose of the survey was to generate findings and focused recommendations aimed at informing a new voter registration design and regime, and reform of other aspects of the electoral process in Kenya through the provision of baseline data and information. The survey findings and recommendations are thus primarily intended to support the Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC) in its electoral reform efforts and in the preparation of a new voters register for the country. KEY FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS The following are the key findings of the baseline survey on voter registration design in Kenya and the proposed recommendations for the necessary action and interventions. 1. Importance of voter registration: The baseline survey revealed that 92% of eligible voters in Kenya regard voter registration as a very important exercise. This is because through registering as a voter, one is able to participate in the electoral processes and to elect leaders and government of his/her choice. These findings indicate that despite the post election violence after the 2007 General Elections and the related impacts, voters still understand the importance of voter registration as a critical component towards political participation.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Recommendation: We recommend that the IIEC puts in place concrete plans and adequate resources (human, financial and equipment) to cater for large numbers of eligible voters who are likely to register in the forth coming national voter registration exercise expected to commence in February 2010. 2. Voters awareness of the Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC): The survey showed that 55% of the voters are not aware of the IIEC and its mandate. Computed against the 20 million eligible voters in Kenya, this means that approximately 11 million eligible voters are not aware of the IIEC and its mandate. Recommendation: We recommend that the IIEC officials should mount serious publicity and public relations strategies and methodologies to enhance public awareness with regard to the IIECs mandate and role, and plans to reform and promote the electoral process and environment in Kenya. We believe that enhanced awareness is critical in inspiring public ownership, confidence and participation in democratic governance and electoral processes in Kenya. Some of the methodologies for awareness creation suggested by the respondents included the use of local vernacular FM radio stations, use of meetings especially chief s barazas, women and youth groups meetings, use of posters, through schools and seminars, door to door campaigns, use of voter registration clerks during registration and use of religious institutions such churches and mosques. The IIEC should consider these suggestions as it designs its publicity and public relations strategies. 3. Participation of voters in the planned national/mass voter registration process to create a new register of voters: 86% of the eligible voters indicated that they would turn out and present themselves to register as voters. Computed against the 20 million eligible voters1, this means that approximately 17.2 million eligible voters are likely to register in the forth-coming national/mass voter registration drive to be undertaken by the IIEC. On the contrary, 13% of the respondents indicated that they would not participate in the voter registration drive expected to be undertaken by the IIEC. This accounts for 2.6 million of the eligible voters computed against the 20 million eligible voters.

The figure of 20 million eligible voters has been arrived at based on the findings of the IREC (Kriegler Commission). According to the IREC Report, the total number of registered voters as at 2007 which was 14,296,180 represented 71% of the 19.8 milion persons over 18 years who had been issued with National Identity cards as at 2007. This means that the eligible voting population (eligible voters) was 19.8 million in 2007. We have rounded up this figure to 20 million eligible voters. See, Report of the Indepenedent Review Comission (IREC) on the General Elections held in Kenya on 27th December 2007, Government Printer, Nairobi, 2008, p.8 and p.78. The IIEC has targeted 15 million voters for registration during the forthcoming voter registration exercise. See Daily Nation, Friday, January 22, 2010, p.10.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Recommendation: We recommend that as the IIEC plans to register voters afresh countrywide, they should put in place adequate resources and effective strategies to capture all eligible persons including the youth, women, people with disability and the elderly. Also, the IIEC should execute its mandate in a professional, transparent and accountable manner to regain confidence of those who indicated that they would not register. Also the IIEC need to undertake serious Civic/Voter education to create awareness on voter registration and its importance. The IIEC should plan and implement together with other stakeholders, special and focused campaigns to target some difficult-to-register groups. Overall, the IIEC should develop and implement strategic, focused and cost-effective voter education campaigns. 4. Minimum age for Voter Registration: The survey findings showed that 73% of voters would want the minimum age for voter registration to remain at 18 years. This is because at age of 18 years, a person is regarded as an adult and is capable of making concrete choices and decisions. These findings tally with the proposed minimum age for voter registration in the Harmonized Draft Constitution Article 104(1a). Recommendation: We recommend that the provision on minimum age of 18 years for voter registration in the Harmonized Draft Constitution be safeguarded. Never -the-less, progressive thinking may require that attention and focus be given to young people who will reach the voting age within one or two years. We recommend that this category should specially be considered as a focus of voter education campaign in secondary and high schools where appropriate provisional register for this category may be established. 5. Identification document for voter registration: The survey revealed that 88% of voters regard highly the National Identification (ID) card and would want it to continue as the primary identification document for voter registration. Use of the National ID card for voter registration also received higher level of rating during the FGDs and among the Key Informants. This is because the ID card is regarded as a security document and the use of the ID card ensures that only eligible Kenyan citizens are allowed to participate in elections. However, majority of the key informants during the Focused Group Discussions expressed concerns with regard to the delay in the issuance of ID cards to Kenyan citizens, which in turn affects voter registration. In some cases the respondents indicated that applicants have to wait for 2 to 6 months in order to get the ID cards. Recommendation: We recommend that the IIEC reviews the use of a passport for voter registration and voting since in some cases the details in the passport and the ID card may differ hence disenfranchising the voter. Also IIEC should consider the use of waiting cards for voter registration. There is also need to decentralize, fast track and streamline the ID card issuance process.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

6. Participation of Kenyans in the diaspora in the electoral process: It was established that 83% of the voters would like to see Kenyans living in other countries participate in voter registration processes and elections. Voters felt that since these are Kenyans and may one day come back to their mother land, they should be involved in making political, leadership and governance decisions of their country. It was suggested that they could register and vote online if these systems are put in place or they should register through Kenyan Embassies in the respective countries abroad. The survey revealed that 68% of voters prefer online voter registration. However, online voter registration would only favour 35% of the respondents who indicated that they have access to internet services and also know how to use computers and the internet. Recommendation: We recommend that the IIEC should consider introducing online voter registration and online verification of voters details to enable Kenyans living in other countries as well as those who have access to the internet to register. We therefore recommend that the provision in the Harmonized Draft Constitution relating to online voter registration should be safeguarded and reflected in the proposed draft Elections Bill 2009. 7. Participation of prisoners in the electoral process: It was established that 87% of voters would want to see prisoners participate in elections. This is because they have a right to do so, they are Kenyans and that they will not remain prisoners forever. These statistics tend to support the provisions in the Harmonized Draft Constitution Article 103(2c), which states that legislation for the manner of voting in elections should take into account the special needs of prisoners and hospitalized persons. This is a progressive provision which we propose should be safeguarded and also captured in the proposed draft Elections Bill 2009. Recommendation: The IIEC and other stakeholders in the electoral process should work towards ensuring inclusivity in the electoral process. In this regard and in the event that the proposal to include prisoners is safeguarded in the new electoral laws, then the IIEC should put in place special strategies and methodologies of registering prisoners to ensure that they are not manipulated to register and vote for certain political interests. 8. Challenges that hinder effective voter registration: It was found out that some of the major challenges that hinder voter registration include short duration for voter registration, distance between residential areas and voter registration centers (particularly in North Eastern Province), lack of National Identity cards, ignorance and voter apathy, illiteracy, poverty, poor infrastructure and insecurity.

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Recommendation: We recommend that issuance of ID cards should be decentralized up to the sub-location level and if possible up to the polling station level so that it can be implemented hand in hand with voter registration. Also, the IIEC should work together and collaborate very closely with National Registration Bureau (NRB) to have simultaneous issuance of ID cards and voters cards. Also, there should be serious Civic/Voter Education on importance of an ID and voters card. Further more the IIEC should consider acceptance of ID waiting cards for voter registration for those whos ID cards have not been processed. The IIEC should also utilize in an aggressive manner door to door mechanisms for voter registration, and availing adequate resources in terms of finances, human resources, equipment and materials. 9. Computerization of Voter Registration: The survey found out that 84% of the voters would want voter registration to be computerized so as to reduce paper work, fasten the process and enhance verification of the voters details in the register. A better option for Kenya would involve transforming the current system to an alternative based on other population databases. If Kenya were to adopt the Indian system, registration exercise could be done jointly with the Population and Housing Census so as to merge the cost of the two exercises. This however would only be viable if the two processes coincide. In addition, 70% of the voters prefer to be issued with voters card on the same day of registration. These findings mean that the IIEC should also put in place faster and effective voter registration processes so that voters can be issued with voters cards immediately after the registration process. Recommendations: We recommend that voter registration in Kenya be computerized and if possible to be undertaken together with the Population and Housing Census. Also, the IIEC should put in place strategies and methodologies of ensuring voters are issued with voters card on the same day. 10. Photographic Voters Cards: It was established that 84% of voters would like their photographs to appear on the voters cards. This is because photographic voters card would assist in the verification of ones true identity and incase it is lost, it is easier to recognize the owner using photographs. It will also help in curbing impersonation during voting. Interviews with the IIEC officials during the electronic voters cards demonstrations revealed that the IIEC has intentions of introducing electronic voting with electronic voters cards bearing voters photos. Also, the IIEC has informed the public that they will be piloting digital voter registration in 17 constituencies in Kenya to assess its viability and cost. In India2, Uganda3, Nigeria, Ghana, Tanzania, Sierra Leone, Democratic Republic of
2

Guide for Voters; Election Commission of India; http://eci.nic.in/eci_main/index.asp. Site last visited on 20th January 2010. The Election Commission of Uganda; Voter Registration; http://www.ec.or.ug/howregister.html. Site last visited on 20th January 2010.

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Congo (DRC) and Liberia for example, photographic voter registration systems are applied4. Kenyans too support the use of photographs in registration. However, one common denominator in these States apart from Kenya is the absence or existence of less credible civil registers that may be used as primary source of information on eligibility for registration. In these countries, the registration is based on Optical Mark Reader (OMR) scanning technology that uses Polaroid cameras and the concern stems from the fact that these cameras were phased out by the producer in 2006. Kenya would thus be moving backwards if it were to adopt this system of registration, and therefore should work towards a centralized data based on an Integrated Population Registration System. Recommendations: We recommend that the IIEC should consider the following options in its endeavor to upgrade the current voter registration system. The decision will however be informed by cost implications and responsiveness to the needs of the country and level of technology. It is important to note that any decision taken with regard to updating a registration technology could also usefully be taken within the context of an overall review of identification requirements in the country. For example, whether there is merit in having a civil registry in place or national identity cards. These options are: Applying the highly digitalized new Polaroid camera (DMP) technology with an integrated thermal printer for instant printing. However, this technology costs much more with an estimate of US$ 1,000 per camera5. The use of standard digital cameras linked to a portable printer that enables printing on the spot. Picture quality may be lower, but cost will be lower as well. The pictures could be kept and later attached to the personal records of the voters and/or can be scanned together with the forms using OMR. This system can easily compromise the accuracy of the register if proper diligence is not observed. In Nigeria, some registrations had to be cancelled due to confusion in the entries that resulted from the mix-ups in matching pictures to correct voters. Use of digital cameras as stand-alone devices that would take and register pictures that can be inserted at a later stage on the voters cards. Voters cards would not however be issued on the spot in this system. The cost in this system would be relatively cheap, but poses other challenges in terms of the process. One such a challenge would be that hundreds of thousands uncollected voters cards as the case with National Identity Cards that remain uncollected by applicants across the country. This option may not
4

Refer to a report on Joint UNDP-EC Workshop on Effective Electoral Assistance, Dar-es-salaam, Tanzania November 2006 http://www.polaroid.com/global/detail.jsp?PRODUCT%3C%3Eprd_id=845524441764226&FOLDER% 3C%3Efolder_id=282574488338434&bmUID=1171013859237&bmLocale=fr_FR. Site last visited on 20th January 2010.

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get support from Kenyans since majority would want to be issued with their voters card instantly upon registration. Moving from scanners to digital kits with a computer, a camera, and a printer powered by a battery or a small generator. This system was applied during voter registration in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The technology proved both sophisticated and expensive with one kit costing about US$ 8,000 (Refer to presentation and demonstration on the system by the Chairman of the National Electoral Commission of the DRC during the Joint UNDP-EC Workshop on Effective Electoral Assistance Dar-es-salaam Tanzania November 2006). If Kenya was to consider this system, its feasibility needs to be explored in terms of budget and law. 11. One comprehensive identification document: It was revealed that 88% of voters prefer one identification document with comprehensive voter details including a photo and biometrics (the use of measurable, biological characteristics such as fingerprints or iris patterns to identify a person to an electronic system). Thus voters would like to have one identification document for voting instead of them having to carry an ID card and a voters card for identification. This would be realized once the Integrated Population Registration System (IPRS) processes have been agreed upon and implemented by various interested parties. IED appreciates the progress made so far with regard to the establishment of an Integrated Population Registration System which includes establishment of an Integrated Population Registration System (IPRS) Department, establishment of an Inter-Ministerial Committee whose members are drawn from different Ministries, Departments and Government institutions involved in registration of persons including the IIEC and existence of a cabinet paper on Integrated Population. It is imperative to note that even the Indian system that uses door-to-door both in enumeration (registration of voters) and cleaning/validation of the register is still an expensive exercise for Kenya and a duplication of both the population census and civil registration processes. What the country requires in the long run is a simplified Integrated Population Registration System. It is the opinion of this report that Kenyans want to have a single identification document and all institution involved in bio data should work towards achieving this goal. Recommendation: We recommend that the establishment of an Integrated Population Registration System (IPRS) be fast tracked by various ministries and government departments involved in the registration of population such the National Registration Bureau, National Bureau of Statistics, Registrar of Persons, Registrar of Births and Deaths and other secondary departments such as the IIEC, NSSF and NHIF to put in place a single identification document. All these ministries and departments should underscore the importance of an integrated

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population registration system such as helping to avoid duplication of efforts by various government institutions and departments, helping in addressing insecurity concerns, reducing electoral fraud during elections, being cost-effective since sharing of population information and data can be accessed more easily, enhancing service delivery by different actors e.g. financial institutions, pension fund, NHIF, NSSF, IIEC, IIBRC, police and enhancing collaboration and coordination between different government ministries, departments and institutions. The government should move fast to address major challenges that continue to face the realization of a comprehensive and effective Integrated Population Registration System in Kenya such as prolonged and bureaucratic procurement procedures, need for intensive and wide consultations to create ownership and support, limited funds, lack of coordination and constructive consultation amongst various government ministries, departments and other government institutions such as the IIEC, NHIF, NSSF, IIBRC and lack of legislation to govern and set procedures for the Integrated Population Registration Process. We recommend that the government should legislate on the Integrated Population Registration System and allocate adequate and sustainable resources to cater for it. Good examples and lessons can be drawn from the Danish and Swedish experience with funtional civil registries which are maintained and used to generate a voters list. As a result, citizens who are eligible to vote are automatically included in the voters register upon inclusion in the civil register. 12. Introduction of electronic voting: The baseline survey on voter registration design in Kenya revealed that 83% of voters would want electronic voting to be introduced in Kenya and that voters cards should be electronic just like Automated Teller Machines (ATM) cards. Most voters felt that electronic voting will help curb electoral malpractices such as rigging, it will make work easier and it will enable Kenyans in the diaspora to vote. However, a small percentage of voters (16%) felt that electronic voting will reduce job opportunities for many Kenyans and that it will be challenging for the illiterate people. Recommendation: We recommend that the IIEC should consider introducing electronic voting in Kenya to avoid many challenges that are associated with manual voting and counting of votes. Electronic voting would address issues such as double voting and delay in the counting and tallying of votes hence election results would be announced faster. In any event, Kenyans are already a population which has a lot of confidence and trust in transacting business in electronic form especially in the banking sector where use of ATMs and Mobile Money Transfer Services (M-Pesa) facilities has increased exponentially including amongst the rural and illiterate people. Therefore, a foundation already exists upon which introduction of electronic voting could be anchored. Furthermore, as compared to Brazil, which is more complex in terms of diversity and the illiteracy levels yet electronic voting has been embraced and

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practiced in Brazil for a long time, there is no reason for Kenya to fear embracing electronic voting. 13. Introduction of Advance Voting: The introduction of advance voting for some categories of voters such as the security officers, election officials and observers was supported by 73% of voters during the survey. However, the respondents and key informants in the FGDs raised issues relating to manipulation and security of the advance votes. The respondents were quick to point out that advance voting should be done with utmost transparency, accountability and security, and without any compromise to secrecy of the ballot to avoid suspicion of manipulation, cheating and should be done one day to election day. Recommendation: We recommend that a clause should be introduced in the Harmonized Draft Constitution and in our new electoral laws to provide for the introduction and implementation of advanced voting for some categories of voters. This would avoid the disenfranchisement of voters who may not be available on the voting day to cast their votes for various reasons. It will also reduce to some extent long queues on the voting day. 14. Voter Registration System: Voter registration system can be periodic, continuous or civil registration-based. A periodic voter registration system creates a periodic register established for a specific electoral event while a continuous voter registration system creates a register of all currently eligible voters, adjusted to take account of voter registration changes between electoral events. The civil based registration system creates a register of basic information on all citizens and combines civil registration with voter registration. The survey findings showed that 48% of voters prefer continuous voter registration system. This preference corresponds with the provisions in the Harmonized Draft Constitution Article 112(2a) which states that the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission will be responsible for the continuous registration of citizens as voters in all parts of the country and those residing outside Kenya subject to the necessary cessation of registration preceding an election or a referendum. It is important to note that even if most voters prefer continuous voter registration process and the same system being proposed in the Harmonized Draft Constitution, the IIEC may want to note that the current system, including the provision for continuous voter registration has failed the credibility test over time. As observed in the IREC Report on the 2007 Elections, the current system is outrageously expensive with very little productivity. Recommendations: We recommend that the IIEC should align the voter registration system with a new administrative and electoral system. In addition since

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the voter registration system is closely linked to an electoral system, we would like to recommend that Kenya should hold on in its plan to undertake fundamental reforms in the registration system so as to align voter registration regime with an electoral system that will emerge out of the on-going constitutional reform. The Harmonized Draft Constitution already proposes far reaching reforms on Kenyas governance and electoral systems such as proposals for adoption of devolved system of governance structures some of which will be elective. Should the proposals in the Draft Constitution be adopted, a new voter registration regime will be required to provide a framework that would align the proposed elective administrative units with the current ones. We would also like to recommend that Kenya should move away from continuous and periodic voter registration systems to an integrated system in the long run. As observed in the IREC report, the cost of elections in Kenya is already very high compared to other countries with emerging democracies. Such processes like continuous voter registration introduced through legislation in 2002 has failed to produce the desired results, and instead proved wasteful and untenable. This process should be discontinued and the country reverts to a simplified periodic registration that should be implemented twice within two elections. We also recommend that the IIEC should design a simplified and cost effective voter registration system. As the IIEC moves to prepare a register for the Constitutional Referendum expected to be held in 2010, it has to put into consideration the cost of a given choice of registration technology, and its usability beyond the referendum. A recurring underlying point which the IIEC needs to address in its choice is that election administration process must compete for government funds with other priority public goods and services, such as health care, national security, infrastructure development, and other basic necessities, including eradication of poverty, diseases and hunger and development of human capacity if national aspiration as envisaged in Vision 2030 is to be realized. This places additional pressure on the IIEC to justify its budget and be efficient while at the same time obtaining sufficient resources to conduct elections according to international standards and the local operating political environment. We would also like to recommend that for purposes of Constitutional Referendum and 2012 General Elections the IIEC should consider establishing an interim simplified register by making some improvements on the current system. This may involve phasing out the use of Optical Mark Reader (OMR) and replacing this with a simple registration using a simple form (see appendix 4) to be completed in triplicate and the information be computerized after the closure of registration period. Primary documents still remain the National Identity Card and a voters card to be issued instantly upon registration. In the long run however, Kenya should work xv

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

towards Integrated Population Registration System and the enormous resources the IIEC plans to utilize in developing a new registration regime should be directed towards the realization of this noble dream. This would involve a deliberate move to merge the operations of some departments of the Electoral Commission with those of the National Registration Bureau. 15. Voter Registration Method: The survey revealed that 53% of voters prefer manual voter registration methods to online and use of mobile phones for voter registration and inspection despite the fact that 83% of voters own a mobile phone. As indicated earlier, most voters had fears of reduced jobs if voter registration is computerized, made online or if mobile phones are used to register voters and verify their details. Again in regard to voting, 70% of voters prefer voluntary voting to mandatory voting. It is important to note that voter registration methods are either state-initiated-meaning voters are automatically registered by local authorities on the basis of residence or other records, or self-initiated, in that eligible constituents must take individual initiative to apply for inclusion in the register for electors. The accuracy and inclusiveness of a given voters register are central elements in ensuring citizens participation. Whatever voter registration system used, the lists should be compiled in a manner that is clear and transparent, and voters should have an easy way to check for mistakes and correct inaccuracies. Recommendations: We recommend that the IIEC should adopt diversified methods such as manual, online, and use of mobile phones for voter registration and verification of voters details in the register to cater for different categories of voters. Also, voter registration in Kenya should remain voluntary. 16. Distance from residential areas to Voter Registration Centres: 67% of the voters would like to walk for less than a kilometer to the voter registration centre. A significant number prefer to walk between 1 to 5 kilometers to the registration center. The survey also revealed that voters prefer to register at the polling stations and schools. A significant number of voters also prefer to register at homes, market places, churches and hospitals. The survey also revealed that 46% of the voters prefer each polling station to have a maximum of between 500-1000 registered voters while 36% of the respondents preferred less than 500 registered voters. Recommendations: We recommend that as the IIEC plans to commence a national mass voter registration drive, it should ensure that the registration centres are accessible to all eligible voters. The IIEC should also employ diversified methods for voter registration including door to door, use of churches, mosques, hospitals, prisons and even market places. Each polling station should not have more than 500 registered voters.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

17. Exhibition and inspection of register of voters: The baseline survey findings revealed that 82% of the voters would like the voters register to be exhibited for inspection at polling stations. Also, voters would like to have at least a month set aside for the inspection of the voters register. In India for example, a draft voters roll is prepared after an intensive house-to-house enumeration/registration process where all electors are captured. The enumeration of electors is normally done once in every five years. However, there is a provision for summary revisions done every year to capture those who have changed their locations. During this period, the existing electoral rolls are published at each polling booth locations where claims and objections for inclusion, deletion, modification and transposition are made. This is followed by preparation and publishing of a supplementary electoral roll. Recommendations: We recommend that after the compilation of a new register of voters, the IIEC should display the voters register at polling stations for inspection. This will enable voters to access the register for verification of their details before voting. We also recommend the need to consider reforms in the way objections and claims regarding voter registration are handled. We propose that a local administrative tribunal appointed by the Constituency Registration Officer (CRO) should handle objections. Such a tribunal should comprise five members thus a village elder, local administrative leader, women and youth representatives and a religious leader. Such a tribunal should be clearly provided for in the law governing voter registration and elections. The decision of the tribunal shall be as fair as possible through consensus, and/or a simple majority vote among the five members. The decision of the tribunal should be subject to the review of the Electoral Commission whose decision on the matter should be subject to review by the High Court. The decision of the High Court on the matter should be final. The decision of the tribunal should be made public and displayed for public scrutiny to give a chance to the affected voters to present their case to the Commission. We also recommend that there should be a clear provision in the electoral legislation on the exhibition of and objection against voter registration in order to have a credible register after validation exercise. The inspection period need to be extended from 14 days to 30 days as recommended by a large section of Kenyans who took part in this survey. 18. Allowing Voter Transfer: It was established that 79% of voters were of the opinion that voter transfer should be allowed due to voter mobility caused by factors such as acquisition of property else where, marriage, change of jobs, and nomadic life of some communities. However, voters pointed out that there should be caution on the modality of transfer and that transfers should be monitored and limited due to the past experiences of voter trafficking. With regard to the time frame for voter transfer, majority of the respondents were of the opinion that it should be allowed within 1 to 6 months to election day and that there should be a timeframe between the closure of

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

transfer period and the election day so as to allow the Electoral Commission sufficient time to verify if there are any cases of multiple registrations. Voters interviewed also suggested the following transfer procedures that should be followed; Reporting to the Constituency Registration Officer and chief of the area where one wishes to relocate to with a letter or a note from the Constituency Registration Officer and chief of the area where he/she is coming from indicating the reasons for transfer. The old voters card should then be re-submitted to the Electoral Commission. One should fill a transfer form. Verification should be done on the registers in both constitituencies and wards as the case will require to ensure no double registration is recorded. A recommendation letter from the Constituency Registration Officer and area chief or administration stipulating the reasons for transfer is required, which will be issued to the Registration Clerk. Recommendations: We recommend that voter transfer should be allowed to allow eligible voters to register and vote in the areas of their choice and convenience. However, the transfer of voters should be well planned, managed and timeframes for it put in place. Voters should be notified on the periods and processes for voter transfer in advance so that those who want to transfer can do so on time.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

CHAPTER ONE
1.1. INTRODUCTION
This chapter presents and discusses the survey background, rationale, purpose and objectives that the survey sought to achieve. The significance of the survey and limitations are also highlighted in this chapter.

1.2. Survey Background


Voter registration is one of the essential components of the electoral process cycle. It is the process of verifying potential voters, and recording their bio-data on a voters register. In almost all countries, voters names must appear in the register so as to be eligible to participate in elections either as voters or candidates. It is therefore imperative for Election Management Bodies (EMBs) to maintain an accurate, all inclusive, current and complete voters rolls as one of the pre-conditions for a democratic election. An accurate voters roll makes it possible for the Electoral Management Body (EMB) to verify voter eligibility and control the legitimacy of the balloting process in an election. By confirming that voters have met all eligibility requirements, the register of voters helps confer legitimacy in the electoral process. In Kenya, voter registration system and processes have been in existence since independence. Before 1997, the registration of voters was periodic in the sense that the exercise was often conducted in an election year after which it would be effectively closed until the next General Election. From 1997, the Electoral Commission of Kenya (ECK) computerised the voter registration process and maintained a consolidated computerised National Register of Voters. There were incremental registration drives between 1997 and 2001. A major registration drive was undertaken in the run-up to the 2002 General Elections that increased the total number of registered voters from 8,967,569 to 10,451,1506. To improve the electoral process, a number of electoral reforms were initiated resulting into the enactment of the Statute Law (Miscellaneous Amendment) Act 2002, which among other things provided for continuous voter registration process. This enabled the ECK to continuously update the register of voters between 2003 and 2007 when the ECK again undertook a national registration drive. By the close of voter registration drive in July 2007, a total number of 14,296,180 voters were captured in the National Register of Voters.
6 Registered Voters by Constituency (Comparative Data -1997-2007)

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Voter registration process in Kenya has faced a number of challenges over the years. These include complicated application procedures and long waiting periods for the issuance of National Identity card which is a pre-requisite for voter registration; existence of ineligible voters in the register of voters; miss pelt names and wrong entries of voters details in the register of voters mainly caused by human errors; lack of awareness to inspect the voters register; inadequate voter education and publicity on voter registration; double/multiple voter registration, importation of voters and inadequate resources in terms of human, financial and equipment. These challenges coupled with lack of coordination, harmony and information sharing between the Civil Registry/National Registration Bureau/Registrar of Persons and the ECK undermines the Kenya EMBs efforts in maintaining a comprehensive, current and accurate register of voters. As documented in a number of audit reports7, the defunct ECK faced the 2002 and 2007 General Elections with registers that undermined the realization of free and fair elections. The IREC report for example concluded that the voters register which has been updated since 1997 was materially defective in three aspects namely; the registered voters represented only 71% of the voting age population in Kenya; the register included names of about 1.2 million deceased persons; and that women and voters between the ages of 18-30 years are significantly under-represented. In addition members of certain marginalized communities encounter difficulties in obtaining their national identity cards. Indeed the IREC report concluded that voter registration system and processes in Kenya have not worked, have had very low productivity, is outrageously expensive, have not been properly managed and controlled, and have created a voters register that has a low and biased coverage8. The IREC recommended the creation of a new Electoral Management Body and adoption of new voter registration system. On voter registration especially, the IREC recommended that there is need to move to a new voter registration system which integrates the issuance of National Identity (ID) cards with the registration of voters so that when a person registers for an ID card, he/she can automatically be entered in a voters register and informed of the location of the polling station where he/she should vote. In addition, the IREC recommended that qualification for entitlement for voter registration should be simplified to be based on residency and that during voting, voters should be allowed to vote using the National ID provided their names appear in the register9.
7

IED (2002), The Registration of Voters; An Audit; IED (2004), The Registration of Voters, An Audit, IED (2007), Pre-Elections Observations, Registration of voters, An Audit. Report of the Independent Review Commission (IREC) on the General Elections held in Kenya on 27th December 2007, Government Printer, Nairobi, 2008, pp. 78-80. Ibid, The IREC Report p.157.

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

In its efforts to implement the IREC recommendations, the government through the enactment of Constitutional Amendment Act 2008 disbanded the ECK and provided for the establishment of the Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC). Part of the mandate of the IIEC is to conduct fresh voter registration and create a new register of voters10. The IIEC is expected to execute its constitutional mandate of registering voters afresh in an environment characterized by the challenges identified earlier. It is based on the foregoing that IED conducted a baseline survey on designing a new voter registration systen to inform and support the electrol reform processes in Kenya. The study aimed at providing baseline data and information to support the IIEC in its electoral reform efforts and preparation of a new voters register for the Constitutional Referendum and future elections. The survey was conducted in 20 sampled constituencies namely; Turkana South, Marakwet West, Ainamoi, Kuresoi, Lari, Rongo, North Mugirango, Kisumu Town East, Lugari, Mt Elgon, Kasarani, Kangema, Central Imenti, Wajir West, Lagdera, Mutito, Kibwezi, Voi, Ganze, and Kajiado.

1.3 rationale of the Survey

The survey was justified on three broad grounds. First, following the enactment of the Constitution Amendment Act No. 10 of December 2008 that effectively disbanded the ECK and provided for the establishment of the Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC), the existing register of voters was technically invalidated. The Act mandates the IIEC to among other things design a new voter registration system and compile a new register for the Constitutional Referendum and other elections. The IIEC in discharging this constitutional mandate is expected to address some of the challenges that plagued the defunct ECKs efforts in compiling and maintaining an accurate, current and complete register. Secondly, the 2007 General Election fiasco affected Kenyans in different ways, which are likely to be reflected in their participation in governance and electoral processes. First, is a large section of Kenyans who were convinced that their presidential candidate won the presidential elections but was robbed of the victory. This category has become disillusioned with the electoral process and believes that their votes will not make a difference even in future elections. The second category consists of Kenyans who attribute the post election violence and the resultant losses to the way they voted. These concerns coupled with general public apathy on elections and governance are likely to undermine the anticipated voter registration drive. Hearing the views and voices of these Kenyans, anticipating their concerns and taking into account their wishes in relation to the electoral processes in Kenya is thus critical. The survey was intended to capture these views and put them in perspective as a way of informing the proposed voter registration initiatives and other reforms in the electoral processes in Kenya.
10

The Constitution of Kenya Amendment Act No. 10 of December 2008

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

The third ground is lack of clarity on the electoral system Kenya is likely to adopt; yet the electoral system will determine the registration regime to be used. Also, lack of clarity on the electoral system that the country should adopt was evidenced in the Harmonized Draft Constitution that was released by Committee of Experts (CoE) on the constitutional review process. IED believes that the registration system to be designed by the IIEC must be informed by a well-researched data reflective of a desirable electoral system. It is against this that IED conducted a baseline survey for voter registration design in Kenya with a view to establishing citizens views and proposals for an efficient and effective voter registration system. The survey was intended to inform and support the design and implementation of the most suitable voter registration system, processes, strategies and approaches for the country and make recommendations on other critical aspects of the electoral processes in Kenya.

1.4. PurPoSe of the Survey


The purpose of the survey was to inform and support a new voter registration design and system, and reform to other critical aspects of the electoral process in Kenya. The study aimed at providing baseline data and information to support the IIEC in its electoral reform efforts and preparation of a new voters register for the Constitutional Referendum and future elections.

1.5. oBjectiveS of the Survey


The survey sought to achieve the following objectives: To explore ways of establishing a new voter registration regime and design in Kenya. To develop strategies to address possible voter apathy resulting from the 2007 General Elections fiasco. To establish citizens views and perceptions on the most suitable voter registration system that should be adopted. To make recommendations to support the reform of other aspects of the electoral process in Kenya.

1.6. Significance of the Survey


The survey is significant in the sense that it will provide baseline data and information on voter registration system and processes, which is critical in supporting the design and implementation of the new voter registration system and processes that should be adopted, including the creation of a new register of voters by the IIEC. The study will specifically benefit the IIEC officials and support them to design, plan, administer and manage the voter registration system and processes and other electoral processes in Kenya efficiently and cost -effectively. The study

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

findings will also be useful to the IIEC and other civic/voter education providers in designing, implementing and monitoring strategic and focused civic/voter education programmes to address electoral/voter apathy and other related hindrance to voter registration and inspire confidence in electoral processes. The findings will also inform the on-going constitutional and electoral reforms processes in Kenya especially with regard to the most suitable electoral system for Kenya and other desirable electoral processes.

1.7. limitationS of the Survey


During the survey IED experienced a number of limitations and difficulties both conceptual and administrative. First, since we had set a timeframe for the survey mainly based on the available resources, it meant that the administration of the survey tools was to be done even on weekends. This made it difficult to find the Provincial Administration Officials in their offices especially on Sundays. The effect of this on the survey was that few respondents were interviewed on weekends leaving the rest to be interviewed on weekdays. Second, cultural practices and beliefs especially in North Eastern Province affected the participation of women in the Focused Group Discussions (FGDs) and also in the entire survey. In this regard most of the respondents for the survey were male. Third, in some instances there were misapprehension and misinterpretation of the purpose and objective of the survey. This was mainly suspicion on the part of the respondents and citizens who thought that the survey was probably at the request of Mr. Moreno Ocampo, the International Criminal Court (ICC) Chief Prosecutor to investigate issues to do with the 2007 General Elections violence. Last but not the least, rains coupled with floods and long distances especially in North Eastern Province delayed the administration of the survey tools.

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

CHAPTER TWO
2.1. introduction

LITERATURE REVIEW

This chapter presents and discusses the literature related to designing a new system and processes of voter registration. This literature review is divided into various sections which include: linking voter registration to electoral system, overview of electoral systems, test for the assessment and evaluation of the electoral systems, special features for some electoral systems and legal and administrative framework for voter registration in Kenya.

2.2. linking voter regiStration to electoral SyStem


Any voter registration regime that may be adopted by any country must be backed by existing electoral laws and/or new laws created to provide an operational framework for a new system. This again is governed to a larger extent by an electoral system. A choice of an electoral system has a great potential to influence positively many aspects of election administration. The choice should be functional, with such modification as required by local needs. Many new democracies inherited their electoral system and find it difficult to embrace a new approach to election organization. An electoral system has three main tasks namely to: To translate votes cast into seats won in a legislative chamber; To serve as a channel through which electors can hold their elected representatives accountable and To give incentives to those competing for power to put their platform to the electorate.11 The choice of an electoral system will invariably have an influence on whether there will be electoral districts and, if so, how the boundaries are drawn; on ballot paper design and costs; the counting of the votes and the announcement of the election results. Some electoral systems have the ability to encourage the formation of alliances; others result in the fragmentation of political parties. Electoral systems, like the First Past the Post (FPTP) and Party Block Vote Systems (PBVS), which
11

See International Electoral Standards: Guidelines for Reviewing the Legal Framework of Elections, International IDEA, 2002, p.22.

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

sometimes produce perverse results, are considered likely to encourage losers to resort to undemocratic methods12.

2.3. overview of electoral SyStemS


Electoral systems have stirred a number of debates centered essentially on the best way to relate electoral votes to seats gained at an election within a given jurisdiction. Many considerations have been built into the simple scenario to take account of local, regional and national circumstance, historical, cultural, religious, political heritage, as well as racial, ethnic and gender diversity, in a given society. The mix of these considerations in given communities has led to a profusion of electoral systems with varying degrees of similarities and serving different purposes. Sovereign States behave differently with respect to the selection, adoption and application of electoral systems. Some States display fortitude in changing from one system to another or in adopting two or more systems within their respective jurisdictions, while others, particularly the emerging democracies, which were erstwhile colonies, show reluctance to shed the electoral systems inherited from the former colonial powers. New tests emerged by which the choice of an electoral system might be assessed and evaluated. A random selection of these tests, not in order of importance, included- fairness of a particular system to political parties and to voters, simplicity (particularly in countries with large numbers of illiterate voters), the degree of proportionality of votes gained to seats won, ability to ensure representation in the national assembly for minorities, women and disadvantaged groups of persons, accountability to constituents of a particular geographic unit (constituency or electoral district), ability to minimize racial and ethnic conflicts, ability to generate stable government, enhancement of democracy (effective parliament & effective political parties), effective voter participation, and cost-effectiveness13. It is important to note that no single electoral system at present is capable of meeting all the tests, some of which are not compatible. It is also clear that some jurisdictions are likely to have different needs to be met and should thus seek to adopt the system or systems that have been shown best suited to meet such needs. Set out below are some of the factors to be taken into account when applying each of the foregoing tests for purposes of modernizing an existing system or introducing a new system or systems.
12

13

For a comprehensive discussion of the case studies on electoral systems see Andrew Reynolds B. Reilly and Andrew Ellis, Electoral System Design: The New International IDEA Handbook, Stockholm, 2005. See also Stina Larserud and Rita Taphorn, Designing for Equality, International IDEA, Stockholm, 2007. Also visit: http://aceproject.org/ace-en/topics/es/esa Ibid.

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

2.4. teSt for the aSSeSSment and evaluation of an electoral SyStem


These include: Fairness: Fairness is an important factor in the consideration of the choice of electoral systems. In this context, fairness is primarily assessed with respect to the preferences offered to voters. One approach to this issue is that the first duty of an electoral system is to reflect the views of the electorate in the most effective way possible. This concept of an electoral systems primary duty is to represent individual, as against communal, preferences evolved out of the latter during the nineteenth century. Fairness, however, is not a simple concept, when used to describe an electoral system, as there are many elements to take into account. At best, fairness is an imprecise concept. The concept may embrace registration and voting procedures or the outcome of voting, as it impacts on the seats gained by parties measured against the number of registered voters and votes received at an election. Fairness to voters is sometimes measured in terms of the perception of disenfranchisement during voter registration and wastage of votes. It is perhaps difficult to appreciate that the proper exercise of the right of the franchise in a multiparty democracy in support of an unsuccessful candidate should be considered wasted and why losing candidates should not be countenanced. The logic of this approach might well lead to the conclusion that voters who feel (whether through opinion polls or popular perception) that the candidate or candidates of their choice is/are likely to lose an election, might not bother to register or cast their vote. This surely would not be serving the best interests of democracy. Another aspect of the fairness of an electoral system to voters may be measured by the value given to each vote at an election. In some cases, a particular electoral system may generate two aspects to this issue, namely, a procedural and an outcome. Those electoral systems that use constituencies or electoral districts, particularly multimember constituencies/districts, the delimitation of the constituencies/electoral districts may result in significant electorate disparities due to gerrymandering or otherwise, thus creating great difference in the weight between the numbers of persons required to elect a candidate in given constituencies/electoral districts. The fairness of this situation would depend on the size of the disparity in the electorates of the given constituencies/electoral districts and the nature or cause of such disparity.14
See the Australian case of McGinty & Ors vs. The State of Western Australia (1996) 186CLR 140; also (1996) 70 ALJR 200; also in Carl Dundas (ed). Compendium of Electoral Laws, Practices and Cases of Selected Commonwealth Countries. Vol. 2, Part 1, Commonwealth Secretariat, 1998 at pp. 97-232.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

The fairness of an electoral system is sometimes assessed in terms of its ability or otherwise to offer commensurate representation to the size of electoral groups, such as women, minority ethnic or religious groups in a given society. The proponents of the school of thought that sees the Parliament or National Assembly within a given jurisdiction as a microcosm of the society would undoubtedly argue that representation of major groups should be a primary function of any electoral system. An absence of this element would, from such point of view, result in unfairness of an electoral system that produces that result. By analogy with the foregoing, a similar argument has been put forward in favour of the adoption of electoral systems that do not discriminate between geographic regions of a country, so that a party that gains government has a reasonably wide spread of support by the majority of the regions in the given country. Such result, it is argued, demonstrates the fairness of the electoral system in place and adds to the stability of the government. Proportionality: The concern for proportionality at the outcome of an election has spawned several substantive electoral systems and even more variations of those systems to create families of proportional systems. The focus on outcomes relates primarily to the relationship between parties seats gained and amount of votes received, but some systems or modifications are aimed at offering candidates a similar consideration with respect to voters preferences. Sometimes proportionality, when used in the context of electoral systems, connotes fairness to parties. Like fairness, as seen above, this concept is complex and controversial. The level of proportional representation achieved by a given electoral system, whether taken from the family of proportional representation, majority or other category, varies according to the factors at play in a particular jurisdiction. Thus, proportionality may vary according to the number of seats in a multi-member constituency, the level of percentage (if any) of the threshold required to be met, the turnout of voters, the distribution of support for the parties, and even the method or formula for counting and allocating seats. An electoral system may be designed to achieve only partial proportionality. This may occur by the very choice of a particular system, such as the parallel system of Russia, where no mechanism for compensation is built into the scheme. It may be designed deliberately to achieve only partial or substantial proportionality, as was the case of the proposal put forward for Britain by the Jenkins Report in 1998.15 Proportionality in electoral systems has generated sharp differences of views as to its role in creating stable governments or otherwise. While proponents of this system point to the relative prosperity of Italy up to 1993 and Israel to the present as two
15

See the Report of the Independent Commission on the Voting System, paragraph 119, p. 37.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

countries with high levels of proportionality and frequent coalition governments, detractors nevertheless point to the change of the system in Italy in 1993 to create greater stability in government. They also point to the use of thresholds to buttress the system against the achievement of full proportionality. Simplicity: The concept of simplicity when used in relation to electoral systems does not commend itself to clear understanding and is not self-evident. For some systems, which are often deemed to be simple, for example, the first past the post may have particular regimes that are complex and costly, such as a delimitation of electoral districts or a voluntary voters registration process. In similar vein, the otherwise straightforward Proportional Representation (PR) party list system may be generally simple, but on occasion the allocation of seats between parties is less than clear-cut, being dependent on the allocation formula in place. Simplicity with respect to electoral systems is not synonymous with fairness or efficiency. Systems such as the First Past The Post (FPTP), Alternative Vote (AV) or the Two Rounds (TRS) often use single-member constituencies, whose delimitation is susceptible to gerrymandering and unfairness. Though perhaps not inherent in the particular systems, the single-member constituency approach often gives rise to high levels of challenges by way of election petitions, whose proceedings could be costly and dilatory. The general perception of simplicity in reference to electoral systems is one whose voting procedures are easily understood and used by voters and whose counting of votes and announcing of results are swift, transparent and accurate. These attributes give such systems the potential to render election results more acceptable to losers and the general public. Minorities and women: In diverse societies fair representation of minorities in the national assembly is an issue. More general, at present, the adequate representation of women is an issue for many jurisdictions. The choice of an electoral system in any or both of these situations has to look not only at the functional role of particular systems, but the procedures entailed in removing the difficulties identified. It may be argued that perhaps there are better ways to deal with the minorities ssue in society than minority representation, since in a scenario where minority representation for minority voters in a national assembly lacks the influence and ability to get things done is likely to be less productive than other means. Even if this view were to be accepted in a given jurisdiction, it would not put to rest the issue of fair representation of significant minority groups. There is the question of the limit of minority groups, which could include racial, religious and cultural, ethnicity,

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

national groupings and gender, and the level distribution of such groups in areas of a given country. The determination of the level of representation offered would always depend on the particular system in place. While some countries like Sri Lanka and Singapore tailor their electoral system to deal with minority issues, others try direct means, such as reserve lists for minorities and women. Some political parties, like the Labour Party of Britain, have devised internal procedures to ensure better representation for minorities and women.16 Accountability to constituents: Accountability to constituents is considered an important feature of an electoral system, but a strong bond between a representative and the constituents is more obvious in some systems than in others. Plurality and majoritarian systems like the First Past The Post and Alternative Vote respectively have the potential to develop strict and transparent accountability to their constituents by representatives, particularly in single-member or other relatively small constituencies. The concept of representation of electors in a defined geographic unit may enable those electors to participate in the shaping of the boundaries thereof, thus creating a bond between the electoral districts and the constituents. In some jurisdictions, the representative of a constituency holds a surgery in the electoral district or constituency with constituents frequently. The competition by aspiring candidates at a general or by-election and recall of a representative for failure to perform are events that highlight the importance of accountability in the scheme of particular systems. Some countries, like Guyana, Namibia and South Africa operate electoral systems that are modified at the national level to improve on the regional representation in the national assembly (Guyana) or create local or regional assemblies based on electoral units or wards (Namibia and South Africa) to generate enhanced accountability to electors. Stable government: The perception that a stable government depends on the electoral system in place in a given country is not always supported by close examination. This is so because stable, as distinct from effective, government may be influenced by many factors in addition to the electoral system in place. A fractured society, whether socially, culturally or religiously is unlikely to produce a healthy and stable government, regardless of the electoral system used. The term stable government connotes government administrations that serve their full constitutional
16

A number of countries have reserved seats in their National Assembly for minorities on ethnic or religious grounds including India, Croatia, Jordan, New Zealand, Pakistan, Slovenia and Taiwan. Some countries have introduced a quota system to ensure representation of women, among these countries are Argentina, Brazil and Italy; others like Belgium and Namibia have legislated for womens representation; reserved seats for women, Bangladesh, Taiwan, and Tanzania; voluntary party quota, ANC, South Africa, the ruling party of Mozambique and the Labour Party in the UK offered preferences in favour of women in some constituencies in 1997 with considerable success.

12

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

term each time over a period of years, or if removed from office before a term ends, the removal is done constitutionally and the electors vote in a new government. This latter point reflects the dislike for the replacement of a coalition government by a coalition partner changing alliance in order to form a new government without a new election, as occurred in Germany in 1982. Effective voter participation: One of the tests of a voter-friendly electoral system is the degree to which it facilitates and encourages voter participation in elections. It is, in practice, a difficult benchmark to apply, since voter turnout may be influenced by several factors, including voter education programmes, which may assist voters to understand the voting procedures and the impact of each vote on the outcome of the election. It is still unclear whether or not the time-honoured argument of the impact on voters understanding of the manner in which a given electoral system translates votes into seats, has any influence on voter turnout. Suffice it to say that the detractors of the more complex proportional systems such as the Single Transferable Vote (STV) still point to this possibility as a disadvantage of that system. Even though the wasted vote syndrome associated with the FPTP system appears to have an adverse impact on challenging candidates in safe seat constituencies, the fact that the supporters of candidates with little hope of winning continue to go to the poll in such constituencies is never-the-less an indication that the wasted vote concept is of relative importance to some voters. Some electoral systems are better mechanisms than others to ensure compliance with the voters desire to have a particular political partys policies implemented. In this respect the plurality/majoritarian systems of FPTP, Alternative Vote (AV), Two Rounds (TRS) and the Block Vote (BV) are perhaps to be preferred, as they are likely to lead to fewer coalition governments and thus more likely to implement the policies put forward in their election campaign. Cost-effectiveness: Election processes vary in cost and some could be expensive to sustain over time. One process, which usually entails considerable cost, is the delimitation of electoral districts/constituency boundaries. In a relatively large emerging democracy with a federal structure, such as Nigeria, the construction and periodic review of boundary delimitation with respect to Federal constituencies and Senatorial electoral districts, States constituencies and local government wards, is expensive. The most demanding and expensive systems in this regard are the singlemember constituencies of the Fast Past The Post (FPTP), Alternative Vote (AV) and TRS systems. The multi-member constituencies of the BV, SNTV, the mixed member proportional (MMP) and Single Transferable Vote (STV) are somewhat less expensive to delimit and keep under review, since these districts are larger and fewer

13

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

than single-member ones. The list Proportional Representation (PR) system, which does not use districts or constituencies at all or where it does, use administrative boundaries, avoids much of the delimitation costs.

2.5. SPecial featureS for Some electoral SyStemS


Plurality and majority electoral systems use geographical units, either electoral districts or constituencies to allocate seats in the parliament or national assembly. The preferred approach is to use single-member districts or constituencies. Singlemember districts or constituencies operate unfavorably to parties that are evenly, but thinly, spread rather than concentrated in some districts or constituencies. Some proportional representation systems, such as the Single Transferable Vote (STV) used in Ireland and Malta, use multi-member electoral districts or constituencies. The party list system sometimes also uses large multi-member districts, which are based on administrative regions. The MMP or ADS (Additional Vote System) and parallel systems require electoral districts or constituencies for the portion of seats allocated to electoral districts or constituencies. These are usually single-member constituencies. 2.5.1 The plurality system: The plurality electoral system entails a simple voting process, whereby a voter places a mark beside their preferred candidate. The candidate, who receives the highest number of votes, wins. This procedure is the basis for the description of first past the post to this system. The characteristics of this system allow it to produce strong single-party governments, without reliance on coalition partners, which has earned it the unenviable label of giving rise to a winner-take-all administration. The plurality system gives rise to the first past the post rules for the allocation of seats to Parliament or National Assembly based on the single-member district or constituency. This procedure assures close relationship between elected representatives and their constituents, thereby enhancing the quality of representation, while strengthening the potential for strict accountability to the constituents. Not all plurality systems use single-member districts or constituencies. Plurality systems such as the Block Vote (BV) use multi-member districts, where each voter has as many votes as there are seats to be filled in the given district. The candidates, who receive the highest numbers of votes, are elected. The Single NonTransferable Vote (SNTV) allows each voter one vote in a multi-member district or constituency. The candidates, who receive the highest number of votes, are elected. 2.5.2 Majority systems Under majority electoral systems a representative is elected by a majority of the vote in contrast with the plurality system under which a successful candidate may be elected with less than a majority. Majority systems use single-member districts or constituencies and so they usually combine strong representation with realistic accountability to constituents. Majority systems have characteristics, which are

14

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

similar to that attributed to plurality systems, namely, simplicity, stability and, as aforementioned, strong constituency or electoral district representation. The formula, which is used to ensure a clear winner, is that the candidate should achieve an absolute majority of the votes, that is to say, 50 percent plus one more votes. The two-round system is based partly on majority and partly on plurality. The first round entails the successful candidate to receive an absolute majority of the votes. If no candidate achieves an absolute majority, a subsequent election is held usually two weeks after the results of the first election are known. The rules of procedure governing the contestants in the second (run-off) elections may vary in accordance with the legislative scheme of each jurisdiction. For example, some schemes allow only the two candidates who received the highest number of votes in the first round to contest the second round. Other schemes, like that of the French National Assembly, set a low threshold of at least 12.5 percent of the votes in the first round in order to contest the second election. The winner of the second ballot is usually the candidate, who receives the most votes, whether or not a majority of the votes is achieved. The alternative vote system requires voters to indicate their first preference among the candidates and also rank alternative preferences. The successful candidate must receive a majority of the votes. If a candidate wins a majority of the first preference votes, which are tallied first, that candidate is declared the winner. If no candidate receives a majority of the first preference votes, the candidate with the fewest first preference votes is eliminated. The second preferences of voters who made this candidate their first choice are then distributed among the other candidates. If no candidate is successful in gaining a majority as a result of this redistribution, the process of elimination and redistribution continues until one of the candidates emerges successful. 2.5.3 Proportional systems: Under the proportional system of the Single Transferable Vote (STV) used by Ireland and Malta, multi-member districts, ranging from three to five representatives in each constituency in Ireland and five representatives in each constituency in Malta, are used. The voting procedure has some similarities to that of the alternative vote, in that electors rank candidates in order of preference. A successful candidate has to achieve the quota of votes stipulated. The quota is arrived at by dividing the number of votes cast by one more than the number of seats to be filled, plus one additional vote. Where a candidate has more first preference votes than are required to meet the quota, or if a candidate has so few first preference votes that there is no likelihood of him or her being elected, the electors first preference votes are transferred to a subsequent candidate. The principal features of the Single Transferable Vote (STV) system are the high

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

proportional results of election outcomes, electors vote for candidates and not for parties, and the boundaries of electoral districts or constituencies are reviewed periodically in order to deal with population distortion due to movement of people from one district to another. 2.5.4 Mixed electoral systems: The operation of multiple electoral systems and the allocation of seats at a single election denote a growing trend in election modernization. This approach is called the mixed electoral system and notwithstanding quite distinct variations in the voting arrangements, mixed systems exhibit some common features, such as, each elector having two votes, one for a candidate representing an electoral district or constituency and another for a party list of candidates. A major dividing line between groups of mixed systems is that in the one case seats are allocated on the basis of party lists seats minus the number of district or constituency seats, and on the other, seats are allocated on the basis of party list seats plus the number of districts or constituency seats. The former formula yields greater proportionality. The mixed member proportional system operated by Germany and New Zealand, by way of examples, allocate seats by subtracting the number of districts or constituencies seats that each party wins from the total number of party list seats to which it is entitled. This procedure is often referred to as compensating parties for any disproportion in the number of seats won against the amount of votes received in the districts or constituencies election. This formula is often modified in its application by the setting of thresholds, which may require a stipulated percentage of the votes cast for the party list to be met, and or a number of districts or constituencies to be won by a party, before it qualifies for party lists seats. Thresholds may have a negative effect on the degree of proportionality achieved in seats allocation. The parallel system adds seats won on party lists to those won in districts or constituencies, unlike the MMP system. The result is that the parallel system, as used in Russia, yields less proportional results than the MMP of Germany or New Zealand.

2.6. legal and adminiStrative framework for voter regiStration in kenya


The laws governing elections in Kenya are scattered in a number of statutes and regulations. However, efforts are being made to consolidate the electoral law in one Act beside the Constitution17. Currently, the law governing elections in Kenya
17

The Institute for Education in Democracy, the Kenya Law Reform Commission and the former Electoral Commission of Kenya have been working together since 1996 and more specifically since 2002 to review and consolidate electoral laws in Kenya. The initiative which also included the Attorney Generals Chambers and the Ministry of Justice, National Cohesion and Constitutional Affairs developed a draft Elections Bill and a draft Electoral Commission Bill. The draft Bills, which were first developed in 2005 based on an

16

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

are principally found in the Constitution, the National Assembly and Presidential Elections Act (Cap 7 of the Laws of Kenya), the Local Government Act (Cap 265 of the Laws of Kenya), the Election Offences Act (Cap 66 of the Laws of Kenya), the Political Parties Act, the Public Order Act (Cap 56 of the Laws of Kenya), the Kenya Broadcasting Corporation Act (Cap 211 of the Laws of Kenya) and the Penal Code (Cap 63 of the Laws of Kenya). The National Assembly and Presidential Elections Act (Cap 7 of the Laws of Kenya) provides for the procedures to be followed in preparing for and conducting of Presidential and Parliamentary elections. The Act has to be read together with the regulations and the schedules made under its provisions. The regulations are the National Assembly and Presidential Elections Regulations, Registration of Voters Regulations and the National Assembly Election Petition Rules. Section 17A gives the Electoral Commission overall powers in the conduct of National Assembly and Presidential Elections. The Act gives powers to the Electoral Commission to prepare and maintain a register of electors in respect to all constituencies. Section 34 provides for the Electoral Commission to make regulations to govern registration of electors. The Act, following the amendment in 2002 under the Statute Law (Miscellaneous Amendment) Act 2002, provides for continuous registration of electors. The Act, together with the Local Government Act provides for registration procedures. The procedures include: Continuous registration of voters (except for the time it is not allowed) Where to register Eligibility Registration procedure Time for claims and objections.

The Local Government Act (Cap 265 of the Laws of Kenya) gives the Electoral Commission powers to establish electoral areas and outlines rules (under the 5th Schedule, Sections 10, 53, 57, to 61) that govern the Local Government Elections. The Act outlines requirements for one to register as a voter for Local Government elections. Some of the requirements differ with requirements for registration under Section 43 of the Constitution. Some of these requirements (such as a voter in a local
earlier 1996 draft, have been improved and refined into 2009 drafts, which the Interim Independent Electoral Commission has taken leadership of in terms reviewing and finalizing them for enactment into law. Part of the consolidated draft Elections Bill dealing with local authorities elections has been gazetted as the Local Government (Amendment) Bill, 2009 of 31st December 2009, for enactment into law. Although this is a progressive development, it is contrary to the vision of IED, the Kenya Law Reform Commission and the former Electoral Commission of Kenya, which intended to review and consolidate all existing electoral laws in Kenya into one comprehensive Act.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

authority has to be on the role of rate payers of that local authority) have not been enforced Details of registration of voters are provided under the Registration Regulations under Section 34 of the National Assembly and Presidential Elections Act. For an applicant to be issued with an electors card, proof of citizenship and age must be attained. The applicant must produce a National Identity (ID) card or a valid Kenyan Passport so as to be included in the register of voters. The Constitution was amended in December 2008 by a Constitutional Amendment Act No. 10 of 2008 to establish the Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC) and provide for its mandate among other things. The Amended Section 41A of the Constitution stipulates the responsibilities and functions of the IIEC as follows; Reform of electoral process and management of elections so as to institutionalize free and fair elections Establishing an efficient and effective secretariat Promoting free and fair elections Conducting fresh registration of voters and creating a new voters register Conducting and supervising elections and referenda, efficiently. Facilitating observation, monitoring and evaluation of elections and referenda Promoting voter education and culture of democracy and Settling minor electoral disputes as provided by law. The Constitution provides under Section 43 that voter registration is opened to Kenyan citizens aged 18 years and above, and who have been ordinarily resident in Kenya for at least five months out of the twelve months prior to the registration. For registration as a voter in a particular constituency, the applicant must be an ordinary resident, working, or has property in the constituency. Registration of Kenyans in the diaspora as voters is not provided for. The debate on diaspora voter registration and voting is on-going through the constitutional review process and has been captured in the Harmonized Draft Constitution.

2.7. inSPection of voterS regiSter in kenya


Before a national registration exercise begins, a general notice for registration or revision of register is usually issued and published. The notice gives 30 days for registration period, though this is usually extended. At the expiry of the period, a provisional register is compiled and 14 days given for the display and inspection for purposes of validating the principle register for elections after claims and objections brought or raised by registered voters are addressed. The Registration Officer is expected to process the claims and objections within 7 days, the latter being forwarded to the courts. The courts decisions on the objections and appeals are forwarded to the Registration Officer who amends the record to reflect the court decision.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Section 8 to 11 of the National Assembly and Presidential Elections Act covers the determination of claims and objections arising out of registration on the display and inspection of a preliminary register. Claims raised by registered voters are decided by the Registration Officer, and appeal against the decision of the Registration Officers decision go to the High Court. Objections are brought by registered voters who may object to the registration of another voter whose eligibility to register is questionable in the opinion of the voter raising the objection. The objections are forwarded to Subordinate Courts by Registrar of voters. Regulation 22 of the Registration of Voters provides for amendments to the provisional register so as to: Incorporate the decision of the Registration Officer or the court with respect to any successful claim or objection; or Correct typing errors; or Correct misnomers or inaccurate descriptions; or Delete the name of a person who the Registration Officer is satisfied is dead. After claims and objections are addressed, the center and constituency registers are forwarded to the Electoral Commission Headquarters for consolidation into the Principal or National Register. The Principal Register is computerized, finalized and certified before it is opened to the public for purchase in parts or as a whole. The revision of the register is done three months before polling day. The administrative procedures in the exhibition and inspection of the voters registers in Kenya have undermined the wisdom behind the exercise. The time set aside for the exhibition and inspection is limited, and the locations are far from the majority who may want to inspect the registers.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

CHAPTER THREE
3.1. introduction

SURVEY DESIGN AND METHODOLOGY

This chapter presents and discusses the target population of the survey, sample of the survey and sampling techniques, data collection instruments, instruments validity, data collection procedures, questionnaire return rate and data analysis techniques.

3.2. target PoPulation of the Survey

The baseline survey on voter registration design in Kenya targeted all male and female Kenyan adults aged 18 years and above. The survey also targeted those who had registered as voters previously as well as those who are not registered but are eligible to register. To ensure representative data, gender and age consideration was taken into account while selecting the respondents.

3.3. SamPle of the Survey and SamPling techniqueS

To ensure that each of the 210 constituencies in Kenya had an equal chance of being selected to be part of the 20 constituencies for the survey, probabilitysampling methods were used. The two main probability sampling methods that were used are; the stratified sampling and simple random sampling methods. These two sampling methods provided a higher degree of representation of 210 constituencies in terms of urban and rural population mix. Based on this criterion, the country was divided into 8 stratums/provinces and simple random sampling was conducted in each stratum to identify names of the constituencies for survey. The number of constituencies per province for the survey was based on the total number of constituencies in each of the provinces. For example, Rift Valley Province being the largest provinces with many constituencies had five constituencies sampled for the survey compared to other provinces such as Nairobi that had one constituency sampled for the survey. The rest of the provinces had two to three constituencies sampled for the survey. The survey also utilized purposive sampling method. This was used to select constituencies that have unique characteristics such as economic and geographical locations. Based on this method, constituencies whose communities are pastoralists and those that are located at the border were purposely sampled for the survey 21

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

In each of the 20 sampled constituencies, three sites were visited for purposes of administering survey tools. The criterion for the selection of the sites to be visited was based on provincial administration units at the divisional level. In essence in each constituency, 3 divisions and several locations were visited for administering survey tools and Focused Groups Discussions. The sample size for the survey was 2,537 respondents bearing in mind gender balance. The maximum margin of error attributed to sampling and other random effects of the survey sample size is +/- 2% at 95% confidence level. To achieve this sample simple random sampling method using probability proportional to size was used. This ensured that provinces with a higher number of population and constituencies had a proportionally higher sample size allocation as shown in figure 1. Figure 1: Sample distribution of the respondents per province
700 600 500 400 300 200 100 0 15% 15% 25%

10%

10%

10%

10%

5%

Rift Valley Eastern Nyanza

N. Eastern

Coast

Western

Central

Nairobi

In each constituency, three research assistants who had been trained were deployed to administer the survey questionnaires. Each research assistant was expected to collect voter registration data and information from approximately 14 respondents per day considering gender balance. This therefore means that in each of the sampled constituencies, approximately 125 respondents were interviewed.

3.4 data collection inStrumentS


In general, the survey was executed broadly along the lines anticipated in the project document, and to reflect the thinking and aspiration of the Kenyan electorate and the Electoral Management Body (EMB). As such, participatory face-to-face interviews and desk review techniques was adopted. The survey relied substantially on the experiences of the respondents, their knowledge and perception, and the desire

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

for reforms in Kenyas voter registration process. The survey was accomplished through a combination of methods for generating both secondary and primary data and information for analysis and reporting. These were: Desk Review: This involved review of relevant secondary materials to gather secondary data and information for purposes of complementing the primary data collected from the field. It involved reviewing the voter registration literature contained in minutes and government reports on search for an Integrated Population Registration System (IPRS), reports compiled by the defunct Electoral Commission of Kenya (ECK), various election laws in Kenya, study of registration systems of some selected countries, various reports on Kenyas past elections, other reports on voter registration in Kenya such as various audits of the voter registration process. This report benefited immensely from the report of the Independent Review Commission (IREC) on the General Elections held in Kenya compiled by a team headed by the retired Judge Johann Kriegler. Structured Questionnaire: This involved the household administration of a questionnaire with both open and closed ended questions. The interviews were done at household level. Household interviews were preferred because they allow for pure random sampling ensuring full representation on the various demographics and also for quality control. The questionnaire was preferred because it was economical and had standard questions for the survey. The questionnaire also enabled us to collect both quantitative and qualitative data for the survey. Key Informant and face-to-face interviews: This involved interviews with representatives of the Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC) and staff of the National Registration Bureau (NRB); Open-ended interviews with key individuals, including government officials, teachers and administrators, religious leaders, the youth, women and scheduled in-depth interviews and discussions with other key informants. Focus Group Discussion: In order to enhance and complement qualitative data and information gathered through the administration of the questionnaire, we held three Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) with at least 10 key informants in each constituency selected on the basis of gender and age in close consultation with community leadership structures. In total therefore, the survey held 60 FGDs with approximately 600 key informants across the 20 sampled constituencies. An interview guide was used to guide the FGDs discussions. Each focus group discussion brought together men and women, with a preponderance of young people. In a few areas, participants were placed in homogenous groups by sex so that women, who are not normally given equal opportunity by men to participate, could have the chance to speak and contribute. Cultural sensitivity too was taken into consideration in having groups with homogenous composition.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

3.5. inStrumentS validity


In order to ascertain content validity of the survey tools, IED pre-tested both the questionnaire and the interview guide in two constituencies namely Juja and Narok North on 15th October 2009. The aim of pre-testing the survey tools was to get an appraisal of the tools before being used for the main survey. The pre-test was also undertaken to test the soundness of the questions and establish the average time required to complete one questionnaire. The findings of the pre-testing of the research tools informed the final design of both the questionnaire and the interview guide.

3.6. data collection ProcedureS


The Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC) and the Permanent Secretary; Office of the President; Ministry of Internal Security and Provincial Administration were notified in writing of the IEDs intention to undertake the survey on voter registration design in Kenya. The letter stated clearly the purpose and objectives of the survey as well as the 20 sampled constituencies in which the survey was to be undertaken. IED prepared badges and introductory letters to all the research assistants and IED staff which were presented to the provincial administration officials for identification purposes. While on the field, the research teams developed and maintained a professional working relationship with the provincial administration, local guides and this facilitated the administration of research tools for purposes of collecting relevant baseline data and information on voter registration.

3.7. queStionnaire return rate


The total questionnaires for the survey were 2,537. The survey witnessed the questionnaire return rate of 100%.

3.8 data analySiS techniqueS


After the collection of the data and information from the survey, the questionnaires were serialized and coded. Well-trained data entry clerks keyed the data into the database template. The analysis of the data was undertaken using Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS). The main analytical features for the survey findings included; frequencies, percentages and where relationship was required cross tabulation was undertaken to depict relevant characteristic and relationship. The study findings were presented through tables, figures and pie charts.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

CHAPTER FOUR
4.1. introduction

DATA ANALYSIS AND INTERPRETATION

This chapter presents the analysis and interpretation of the findings of the baseline survey on voter registration design in Kenya. The analysis and interpretation are organized in various sub-headings, which include: demographic information of the respondents; general information on voter registration; information on qualifications and disqualification for voter registration; information on voter registration procedures; information on voter registration system; access to voter registration centers; information on the inspection of voters register and information on voter transfer.

4.2. demograPhic information


The survey sought to find out the demographic information of the respondents in regard to gender, age, education, marital status, occupation and residency. The purpose for gathering demographic information on the respondents was to ensure that the baseline survey took into account the diverse characteristics of Kenyas voting population and that survey responses and findings reflected the views and opinions of eligible voters in Kenya. As Figure 2 shows, out of the 2,537 respondents of the survey 1,395 (55%) were males compared to 1,066 (42%) females. 76(3%) of the respondents did not indicate their gender. These statistics are an indication that the survey reached more men than women. This trend was also reflected in the FGDs participation where majority were males. This could be attributed to the political socialization in Kenya where men are comparatively more involved in political debates and processes than women. Also, cultural and socialization of women could be a factor. In most communities women are not empowered in all spheres to actively participate in political, electoral and governance processes. These statistics are crucial to the IIEC with regard to planning and setting up special programmes, strategies and methodologies to reach out to women to enhance their participation in the forth-coming mass national voter registration processes.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Figure 2: Gender of the Respondents

3% 42% 55%

Male

Female

Non Response

The survey respondents were also drawn from various age groups as depicted in Figure 3. Of importance to note is that majority (1,726) of the respondents were youth aged between 18-37 years. This accounted for 68% of the respondents compared to 32% who aged 38 years and above. These statistics are a confirmation that majority of the Kenyan population are youth. Previous surveys indicate that the population of Kenyan youth is 60%. This is a strong indication that any voter registration system and procedures to be adopted should be done in favor of the youth as they represent a significant percentage of Kenyan eligible voting population. Furthermore, this means that as the IIEC officials plan to register voters, they should plan in search a way that the registration captures majority youth eligible voters. This will require that the IIEC collaborates and work very closely with the Kenya National Registration Bureau to facilitate the issuance of ID cards to the youth especially those who are turning 18 years.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Figure 3: Age category of the Respondents

1,800 1,600 1,400 1,200 1,000 800 600 400 200 0 18-37 Years 38 Years and above 32% 68%

Table 1: Respondents Highest Level of Education No. of Respondents 913 634 584 178 203 25 2,537 Highest level of Education Secondary Education Primary Education College University Illiterate Non-response % of the Respondents 36% 25% 23% 7% 8% 1% 100 Computed against 20 Million approximate eligible voters in Kenya 7.2 Million 5 Million

4.6 Million 1.4 Million 1.6 Million 0.2 Million 20 million

Table 1 above shows the literacy levels of the respondents. From the table it is evident that majority of the respondents accounting for 913(36%) had attained secondary education as their highest level of education followed by primary, college, 27

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

university in that order. Computed against the approximate eligible voters in Kenya, it is important to note that approximately 1.6 million eligible Kenyan voters are illiterate. This therefore means that the IIEC needs to come up with special voter education programes to educate this category of voters With regard to economic empowerment of voters based on their main occupation, it was noted that majority of the respondents accounting for 873(34%) engaged in various businesses and a significant number 646(25%) were farmers while 95(4%) were pastoralists.

4.3. general information on voter regiStration


Figure 4: Importance of Voter Registration

6%

2%

92%
Yes No Non response

As figure 4 shows there was an overwhelming positive response with regard to the importance of voter registration. 2,334 (92%) of the respondents indicated that voter registration is important compared to only 152(6%) who felt that it was not important. Importance of voter registration cited by respondents included that it enables voters to choose leaders and government of their choice and that it provides an opportunity for voters details to appear on the voters register; hence it is a fulfillment of one of the requirement to be allowed to vote. This is an indication that despite the post election violence of the 2007 general elections and the related impacts, voters still understands the importance of voter registration as a critical component for political participation. Related to the importance of voter

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

registration is the possession of a voters card. It is important to note 86% of the respondents had the invalidated voters card, which means that they had participated in the previous voter registration processes conducted by the defunct ECK. Those who indicated that they did not have voters cards cited lack of ID cards, which is a prerequisite for voter registrations as the major hindrance.
Figure 5: Awareness of the Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC)
44%

1%

1%

55%

No

Yes

Non- response

The baseline survey revealed that majority of the voters are not aware of the Interim Independent Electoral Commission and its constitutional mandate. In fact, the survey findings indicated that majority of the respondents accounting for 1,396(55%) are not aware of the IIEC. Computed against the 20 million eligible voters in Kenya, this means that approximately 11 million eligible voters are not aware of the IIEC and its mandate. This calls for the IIEC officials to mount serious publicity and public relations strategies to create public awareness in regard to its role and plans for improving the electoral; processes in Kenya in order to realize enhanced public ownership, confidence and participation in the electoral processes. Some of the methodologies for awareness creation suggested by the respondents included use of local vernacular FM radio stations, use of meetings especially chiefs barazas, women and youth groups meetings, use of posters, through schools and seminars, door to door campaigns, use of voter registration clerks during registration and use of religious institutions such churches and mosques. In regard to participation in the forth-coming mass/national voter registration, majority of the respondents accounting to 2,182(86%) indicated that they would present themselves and register as voters. Computed against the 20 million eligible

29

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

voters, this means that approximately 17.2 million eligible voters are likely to register in the forthcoming mass voter registration drive to be undertaken by the IIEC. These findings are crucial in informing the IIECs planning process in terms of financial, equipments and other resources necessary for the mass voter registration. Related to voter registration, 83% of the respondents indicated that they would participate in voting if elections were called any time. On the contrary, 13% of the respondents indicated that they would not participate in the voter registration drive expected to be undertaken by the IIEC. This accounts for 2.6 eligible voters computed against the 20 million eligible voters. Some of the reasons cited for lack of participation included lack of faith in the electoral body, bad experience after the 2007 general election and lack of transparency in the electoral processes. Therefore, for the IIEC to reach this category of voters, there is need for it to execute its mandate in a professional, transparent and accountable manner to regain confidence of this category of voters. Also, the IIEC need to undertake serious focused civic/voter education to create awareness and reach this category of voters.

4.4. information on qualificationS and diSqualification for voter regiStration


The survey sought to find out the voters views and opinions in regard to the minimum age for voter registration, documents for identification for one to be allowed to register as a voter, challenges facing voter registration and who should be allowed/not allowed to register as a voter in Kenya.
Figure 6: Minimum Age for Voter Registration
Non response 1%

21 years 8% 16 years 15%

17 years 3%

18 years 73%

As figure 6 shows, majority of the respondents 1,852(73%) felt that the minimum age for voter registration should be retained at 18-years. The major reason cited for this response was that at age 18 years, a person is regarded as an adult and is

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

capable of making concrete choices and decisions. These findings tally with the proposed minimum age for voter registration in the Harmonized Draft Constitution Article 104(1a). This therefore means that this provision in the Draft Harmonized Constitution should be safeguarded. On the other hand, 381(15%) of the respondents felt that the minimum age for voter registration should be reduced to 16 years but the person should only be allowed to voter after they have attained 18 years as it is practiced in South Africa. If this is adopted, it would mean that most youth and those who are turning 18 years would be facilitated in advance to participate in the voting processes in an election.
Figure 7: Possession of a National Identification (ID) card

3000 2000 1000 0 Yes

2,410

127 S1 No

The baseline survey findings showed that majority of the respondents 2,410(95%) had National Identification cards compared to 127(5%) who did not have as shown in figure 7 above. Majority of the respondents falling in the 5% were mainly the youth aged 18-22 years. Reasons cited for lack of ID cards included long distances to the ID registration centers, long and tedious vetting process especially in North Eastern Province and long waiting periods. Asked which documents identifies them as Kenyans, the respondents cited various documents such as the National Identity card, Passport, Birth Certificate, PIN Certificate, Driving License, School Certificates and Baptismal Card.

31

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Figure 8: Requirement of ID card for Voter Registration

2,500

2,000 88%

1,500

1,000

500 10% 0 Yes No 2% Non response

Of importance to note is that 2,233 (88%) of the respondents felt that among the many documents that identifies them as Kenyans, the National Identity card should be the most preferred document for identification during voter registration and voting. This is showed in figure 8 above. Use of the National ID card for voter registration also received high level of rating during the FGDs and among the Key Informants. This is because the ID card is regarded as a security document and the use of the ID ensures that only eligible Kenyan citizens are allowed to participate in elections. These findings may inform the IIEC in making decisions on and reviewing the use of passports as identification for voter registration and voting. However majority of the key informants during the Focused Group Discussions expressed concerns with regard to the delay of the issuance and acquisition of ID cards that affects voter registration. In some cases, a person has to wait for 2 to 6 months to get the ID card. There were suggestions that a letter from the chief be accepted for registration especially for old people and waiting cards be considered for use during voter registration. We recommend the need to decentralize, fast track and streamline the ID card issuance process. The baseline survey also sought to find out from voters who should be allowed to vote. Asked whether non-citizens should be allowed to register and vote, majority felt that they should not be allowed because they are likely to vote with other interests other than those of the citizens and the country, and since they are foreigners they should not be involved in making political and governance decisions in Kenya.

32

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Figure 9: Participation of Kenyas living in the diaspora in the electoral processes

15%

2%

83% Yes No Non response

The baseline survey on voter registration design revealed that majority 2,106(83%) of the respondents as depicted in figure 9 above were of the opinion that Kenyans living in the diaspora should be allowed to register and vote. Reasons cited were that they are Kenyans and therefore they should be involved in making political, leadership and governance decisions of their country. Some suggestions of how they should vote were also brought forth such as liaising with the Kenyan Embassy in the respective countries and through the Internet while others felt that they should travel back home to register and to cast their votes. However, 15% of the respondents felt that Kenyans in the diaspora should not be allowed to vote because they are detached from real issues that are affecting Kenyans and therefore they may vote bad leaders.
Figure 10: Participation of prisoners in the electoral processes

No 12%

No Response 1%

Yes 87%

33

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

On the other hand and as indicated in figure 10 above, 2,207(87%) of the respondents felt that prisoners should be allowed to register and vote. This is because they have a right to do so, are Kenyans and that they may not remain prisoners forever. These statistics tends to support the provisions in the Harmonized Draft Constitution Article 103(2c) which states that legislation for the manner of voting in elections should take into account the special needs of prisoners and hospitalized persons. This provision in the Draft Harmonized Draft Constitution should therefore be safeguarded. However, 304(12%) of the respondents were of the opinion that prisoners should not be allowed to vote alleging fears that they may be coerced to vote in a certain manner or for a particular person or particular political interest. The survey also sought to find out some of the challenges that face voter registration and suggestions of how those challenges can be mitigated. It was found out that some of the major challenges that hinder voter registration include short duration for voter registration, distance between residential areas and voter registration centers (particularly in North Eastern Province), lack of identity cards, ignorance and voter apathy amongst voters, illiteracy, poverty, poor infrastructure and insecurity. Various suggestions of how to mitigate the aforementioned challenges included decentralization of the issuance of ID cards up to the sub-location level, simultaneous issuance of ID cards and voters card, serious civic/voter education on importance of an ID and voters cards, acceptance of ID waiting cards for purposes of voter registration for those whose ID cards have not been processed, use of door to door mechanisms during registration of voters, availing adequate resources in terms of finances, human resources, equipment and materials.

4.5. information on voter regiStration ProcedureS


With regard to voter registration procedures, the survey sought to gauge voters views on whether voter registration in Kenya should be computerized, whether voters card should bear voters photograph, whether there should be online voter registration, whether there should be one comprehensive identification document with voters bio-data, whether electronic voting should be introduced and if there should be advanced voting for some categories of voters.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Figure 11: Computerization of Voter Registration

2,124 395 18 0 500 1000 No response 1500 No 2000 Yes 2500

The baseline survey revealed that majority 2,124(84%) of the respondents supported the computerization of voter registration processes in order to reduce paperwork, speed up the process and enhance verification of the voters details in the register. In addition, 91% of the respondents indicated that one should be registered automatically after application and issuance of an ID card. This is because it would save time and cut down on cost as voters would not be required to register again. A better option for Kenya would involve transforming the current system to an alternative based on other population databases. If Kenya were to adopt the Indian system, registration exercise could be done jointly with the Kenyas Population and Housing Census so as to merge the two exercises thereby cutting on costs. However, this would only be viable if the two processes coincide.
Figure 12. Preference of Voters Cards with photographs
Preference of Voters card with Photographs
No Response Yes No

15%

1%

84%

35

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

2,124 (84%) of the respondents prefer voters card with photographs compared to 395(15%). Preference for voters card with photographs was made because voters felt that it would assist in the verification of ones true identity and incase it is lost, it is easier to recognize the owner using photographs. It will also help in curbing personification during voting. Interviews with the IIEC officials during the electronic voters cards demonstrations revealed that the IIEC has intentions of introducing electronic voting with electronic voters cards bearing voters photos. Also, the IIEC has informed the public that they will be piloting digital voter registration in 17 constituencies in Kenya to assess its viability and cost. In India, Uganda, Nigeria, Ghana, Tanzania, Sierra Leone, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Liberia for example, photographic voter registration systems are applied. Kenyans too support the use of photographs in registration. However, one common denominator in these states apart from Kenya is the absence or existence of less credible civil registers that may be used as primary source of information on eligibility for registration. In these countries, the registration is based on OMR scanning technology that uses Polaroid cameras and the concern stems from the fact that these cameras were phased out by the producer in 2006. Kenya would thus be moving backward if it were to adopt this system of registration, but should work towards a centralized data based on an integrated population registration system. There are, however, a number of options incase Kenya would want to upgrade its voter registration system to include issuing voters cards with photos. This decision will however be informed by cost implication and responsiveness to the needs of the country and level of technology. One such option would be applying the highly digitalized new Polaroid camera (DMP) technology with an integrated thermal printer for instant printing. However, this technology costs much more with an estimate of US$ 1,000 per camera. A second option would involve the use of standard digital cameras linked to a portable printer that enables printing on the spot. Picture quality may be lower, but cost will be lower as well. The pictures could be kept and later attached to the personal records of the voters and/or can be scanned together with the forms using OMR readers. This system can easily compromise the accuracy of the register if proper diligence is not observed. In Nigeria, some registrations had to be cancelled due to confusion in the entries that resulted from the mix-ups in matching pictures to correct voters. Another option would involve use of digital cameras as stand-alone devices that would take and register pictures that can be inserted at a later stage on the voters cards. Voters cards would not however be issued on the spot in this system. The cost in this system would be relatively cheap, but poses other challenges in terms of the process. One such a challenge would be that hundreds of thousands uncollected voters cards as the case with national identity cards that remain uncollected by

36

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

applicants across the country. This option may not get support from Kenyan since majority would want to be issued with their voters card instantly upon registration Kenya has an option of moving from scanners to digital kits with a computer, a camera, and a printer powered by a battery or a small generator. This system was applied during voter registration in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The technology proved both sophisticated and expensive with one kit costing about US$ 8,000. If Kenya was to consider this system, its feasibility needs to be explored in terms of budget and law. As noted earlier in this report, any decision taken with regards to updating a registration technology could also usefully be taken within the context of an overall review of identification requirements in the country. For example, whether there is merit in having a civil registry in place or national identity cards. In discussions with the National Registration Bureau (NRB) and the Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC), IED learnt that both institutions underscored the need to improve the current registration systems in Kenya, though each continues to explore disjointed options in computerizing the registration processes. The IIEC for example, is more concerned with the possible life-span of its choice of registration technology given its interim nature, and the need to compile a register to be used in a national constitutional referendum expected in 2010. The IIEC may wish to note that the current system, including the provision for continuous voter registration has failed credibility test over time. As observed in the IREC Report on the 2007 elections, the current system is outrageously expensive with very little productivity. The desire to computerize voter registration process in Kenya is overwhelming with 84% approval rate as indicated in figure 12 above.
Figure 13: Online Voter Registration
No response 1%

No 31% No 68%

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Figure 13 shows that majority of the respondents 1, 725(68%) would prefer online voter registration. However, the online voter registration would only favour 35% of the respondents who indicated that they have access to internet services and they also know how to use the computers and the Internet. The survey also revealed that the most important details that voters would want to see on their voters card included their full names, photographs, thumb print, constituency name, polling station name, gender and voter registration number.
Figure 14: Duration for the issuance of Voters Card

Same day Within a week 2-4 Weeks More than 4 Weeks Non response 0 51 25 500 1000 1500 178 507

1,776

2000

Most of the respondents, 1,776(70%) prefer to be issued with voters card on the same day of registration compared to 507(20%) who felt that they should be issued with voters card within one week after registration. These findings mean that the IIEC should put in place faster/efficient and effective voter registration processes so that voters can be issued with voters cards immediately after the registration process. Table 2: Important document to be used during voting time
Document Voters Card ID Card Passport No Response Total Frequency 1,147 985 13 392 2,537 Percentage 45.21 38.83 0.51 15.45 100

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Table 2 shows the analysis of important documents that voters felt should be used for identification during voting. 45% of the respondents felt that a voters card is the most important document for identification during voting compared to an ID card and a passport.
Figure 15: One identification document

One identification document with comprehensive details


No 11% No Response 1%

Yes 88%

The baseline survey sought to establish whether voters would like to have one comprehensive document with voters bio-data for identification during voting. It was revealed that 88% of the respondents preferred one identification document with comprehensive voters details. This in our view would only be realized once the Integrated Population Registration System (IPRS) processes have been agreed upon and implemented by various interested parties. Alternatively, Kenya could work towards combining civil registration and voter registration through the proposed Integrated Population Registration System (IPRS). This system has been applied with success in a number of countries, including the US, Britain and Australia. For the system to be operationalized, it has to be backed by clear legislation, joint planning and coordination, and pulling together of both human and financial resources between the Electoral Commission and the National Registration Bureau (NRB). NRB has to hasten the implementation of the third generation identity cards to keep pace with the national desire for a computerized integrated registration system.

39

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Figure 16: Introduction of electronic voting

Yes No Non-Response 0 34 500 1,000 1,500 2,000 393

2,110

2,500

The survey findings revealed that 2,110(83%) of the respondents felt that electronic voting should be introduced in Kenya. Reasons cited for this included that electronic voting will help curb electoral malpractices such as rigging, it will make work easier and it will enable those Kenyans living abroad to vote. However, there are those (16%) who thought that we should continue using the manual voting procedures because electronic voting will reduce job opportunities and that it will be challenging for the illiterate people. Others felt that electronic voting system should be introduced gradually i.e. start with a pilot system in selected areas then roll it out in a gradual manner.
Figure 17: Introduction of advance voting
Non response 1%

No 26%

Yes 73%

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Majority of the respondents 73% felt that advance voting for some categories of voters should be introduced compared to 26 % who felt otherwise. However, the respondents and key informants in the FGDs were quick to point out that security of the votes needs to be observed and guaranteed. They also indicated that advance voting should be done with utmost caution and secrecy of the ballot scrupulously maintained to avoid tension, it should only be for specific people e.g. police officers, election officials and observers and that it should be done one day before the official election day. This implies that the IIEC should come up with advance voting system for some categories of people who cannot use the current system.

4.6. information on voter regiStration SyStem


The survey also sought to find out what voter registration system voters would prefer, voter registration methods and whether voter registration in Kenya should be voluntary or mandatory.
Figure 18: Type of Voter Registration System

1,500 1,000 500 0


Continuous

1,213 667 623 34 1


Periodic Civil Based Reg. Non-Response

Figure 18 shows that a significant number of the respondents 1,213(48%) prefer continuous voter registration system. This also is in tandem with the provisions in the Harmonized Draft Constitution Article 112(2a) which states that the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission will be responsible for the continuous registration of citizens as voters in all parts of the country and those residing outside Kenya subject to the necessary cessation of registration preceding an election or a referendum.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Figure 19: Voter Registration Method


No Response Online by use of Internet By use of mobile phone (Sending SMS) Manual

3% 20% 53%

24%

53% of the respondents prefer manual voter registration method compared to 20% who prefer online voter registration and 24% who prefer use of mobile phones for registration. It may be attributed to the fear of losing jobs as manual systems employ so many people as opposed to online services and mobile phones. The survey also revealed that 70% of the respondents prefer voluntary voting to mandatory voting. Based on the foregoing, it is important to note that voter registration methods are either state-initiated-meaning voters are automatically registered by local authorities on the basis of residence or other records, or self-initiated, in that eligible constituents must take individual initiative to apply for inclusion in the register for electors. The accuracy and inclusiveness of a given voters register are central elements in ensuring citizens participation. Whatever system is used for voter registration, the lists should be compiled in a manner that is clear and transparent, and voters should have an easy way to check for mistakes and correct inaccuracies.

4.7. information on acceSS to voter regiStration centerS


Table 3: Preferred distance from residential area to the voter registration centres Response Frequency Percentage Less than 1 Km 1,711 67.44 1-5 km 730 28.77 9-10 km 51 2.01 11- 15 km 9 0.35 16 - 20 km 5 0.20 Over 20 km 11 0.43 No Response 20 0.79 Total 2,537 100

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Table 3 shows that 67% of the respondents prefer to walk for less than a kilometre to the voter registration centre. A significant number prefer to walk between 1 to 5 kilometres to the registration center. With regard to the most appropriate places for voter registration, majority of voters preferred polling stations, schools, homes, market places, churches and hospitals as shown in Table 4. On the other hand, 46% of the respondents preferred that each polling station should have a maximum of between 500-1000 registered voters while 36% of the respondents preferred less than 500.
Table 4: Preferred places for Voter Registration Response Polling Stations Schools Home Market Places Churches Hospitals No Response Total Percentage 48.44 27.87 13.36 6.15 1.85 0.32 2.01 100

With regard to the recruitment of voter registration clerks, the respondents views were as follows: The Electoral Commission to liaise with chiefs and notify them of the minimum requirements the candidates should have. Then the chiefs in collaboration with the Electoral Commission should conduct interviews. The reason for involving the chiefs is because they are in a position to know the character of the candidates. Another suggestion was that all positions are advertised through the Provincial Administration then whoever is interested should apply after which interviews should be conducted at location or division levels. Another suggestion was that the village elders and the chiefs conduct the vetting process of the applicants. One suggestion that recurred in different constituencies was that the clerks should be employed permanently so that the process of registration is made continuous. People who are qualified should have O-level qualifications and above and should not have another job. Should be one who comes from the constituency and well known by

43

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

residents, local leaders and candidates who are contesting. Should have knowledge and experience on voter registration. The clerks should be flexible and should move from one place to another to register voters especially in the pastoralist communities due to their nomadic lifestyle. Short listing and recruitment should be done by independent consultants to avoid corruption. Announcement for the vacancies to be made early in advance to enable eligible candidates to send their CVs.

4.8. information on inSPection of voterS regiSterS


Figure 20: Participation of voters in the inspection of the Voters Register

2000 1500 1000 500 0 Yes No 67% 32% 1% No Response

The survey findings revealed that voter participation in the inspection of voters register is above average. This is evidenced by the response of the majority of the respondents 1,700(67%) indicating that they have inspected the voters register to ascertain whether their details are correct. It is important also to note that a significant number of voters do not inspect the voters register because of various reasons. The survey findings show that approximately 32% of voters do not inspect the register as shown in Figure 20. Asked where they would like to have the voters register to be availed for inspection, the responses were as shown in Table 5.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Table 5: Centers for the Inspection of the Voters Register. Responses At the polling station At the Constituency Election Coordinators Office At the IIEC Headquarter in Nairobi At the Regional Election Coordinators office No Response Total Frequency 2,112 270 69 48 38 2,537 Percentage 83.25 10.64 2.72 1.89 1.50 100

Based on these findings, it is clear that voters would like to have the register of voter availed and displayed at the polling stations for inspection. As the case in many countries, exhibition/inspection locations should be clearly stated in the law. Registration centers or polling stations would be ideal. 82.3% of respondents recommended that the registers be exhibited at the polling station level. Only a small number (16.7%) preferred alternative exhibition places. In India for example, a draft voters roll is prepared after an intensive house-to-house enumeration/registration process where all electors are captured. The enumeration of electors is normally done once in every five years. However, there is a provision for summary revisions done every year to capture those who have changed their locations. During this period, the existing electoral rolls are published at each polling booth locations where claims and objections for inclusion, deletion, modification and transposition are made. This is followed by preparation and publishing of a supplementary electoral roll. Kenya may also want to consider reforms in the way objections and claims are handled. Objections could best be handled by a local tribunal appointed by the Constituency Registration Officer (CRO). Such a tribunal should comprise five members a village elder, local administrative leader, women and youth representatives and a religious leader. Such a tribunal should be clearly provided for in the law governing voter registration and elections. The decision of the tribunal shall be as fair as possible through consensus, and/or a simple majority vote among the five members. The decision of the tribunal should be subject to the review of the Electoral Commission, and such decisions should be displayed for public scrutiny to give a chance to the affected voters to present their case to the commission and the tribunal. The baseline survey found out that majority of the voters posses mobile phones.

45

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Out of the 2,537 respondents, 83% indicated that they have mobile phones and they would like to register and inspect their details through a mobile phone. Compared to a mobile phone, internet rated lower in terms of voters utilization in the voter registration process as well as inspection. Out of the 2,537 respondents, 50% of the respondents indicated that they would like to use internet for registration and inspection of the voters register. Those who felt that they would like to use internet cited accessibility, confidentiality, time saving, speed, accuracy, convenience and avoiding fraud and corruption as the main reasons. While those who felt that internet should not be used cited reasons such as limited access, requires computer literacy and cost as hindrances.
Figure 21: Time frame for the inspection of the voters register

1,200 1,000 800 600 400 200 0

1,077 685

565 178

32

1 1-2 Weeks 3 Weeks

I Month Two Months Non Response

The survey findings showed that majority of voters would like to have at least a month set aside for the inspection of the voters register. Based on our findings, it is important to note that to have a credible register after validation exercise, there is need for a clear legislation on the exhibition and objection. The inspection period need to be extended from 14 days to 30 days as recommended by a large section of Kenyans who took part in this study as shown on figure 21.

4.9. information on voter tranSfer


The survey found out that out of the 2,537 respondents, only 30% had transferred their vote either from one polling station or constituency to another. However, majority (79%) of voters were of the opinion that voter transfer should be allowed

46

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

as shown in figure 22. Some of the reasons mentioned that would necessitate transfer include; acquisition of property elsewhere, marriage, change of jobs, and nomadic communities, and life styles of some communities. The respondents also suggested that there should be caution on the modality of transfer and that transfers should be monitored and limited due to the past experiences of voter trafficking.
Figure 22: Allowing Voter Transfer
20% 1%

79% Yes No Non Response

With regard to time frame for voter transfer majority of the respondents were of the opinion that it should be allowed within 1 to 6 months to election day. There were some suggestions to have a period of time between the closure of transfer period and the election day so as to allow the Electoral Commission to verify if there are any cases of multiple registrations. Some of the transfer procedures that were suggested by respondents and the key informants during the FGD discussions included Reporting to the chief of the area where one wishes to relocate to with a letter or a note from the chief of the area where he/she is coming from indicating the reasons for transfer. The old voters card should then be re-submitted to the electoral commission One should fill a transfer form. Verification should be done on the registers in both wards to ensure no double registration is recorded. A recommendation letter from the area chief or administration stipulating the reasons for transfer is required, which will be issued to the registration clerk. Of importance to note is the involvement of the chief and assistant chief in the transfer process. This is because according to the informants, the chief is normally in close contact with the residents of the area.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

CHAPTER FIVE
5.1. introduction

Summary, concluSionS and recommendationS

The survey was conducted as part of IEDs mandate and initiatives to support the Electoral Management Body and other stakeholders in designing a new voter registration system and regime in Kenya. It was also meant to inform and support reforms on other critical aspects of the electoral process in Kenya. In other words, the survey intended to inform and support the on-going electoral reforms in Kenya. Thus, the survey has generated baseline data and information in the form findings and focused recommendations for necessary action and interventions. It is the opinion of this report that the recommendations would contribute in the design and implementation of a cost effective and efficient voter registration regime for Kenya. While the survey findings and recommendations are primarily intended to support the Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC) in its electoral reform efforts and in the preparation of a new voters register for the country, we believe that other stakeholders in the electoral process including researchers will find them useful and informative. This report contains various recommendations which the IIEC can consider in designing and implementing a new voter registration regime and process for Kenya. Underpinning these recommendations is the crucial role that voters register plays in the electoral process. It is indeed one of the cornerstones of the electoral process and therefore its design and implementation require careful architecture, and justifies a lot of investment in time, personnel and money. Indeed, if conducted well voter registration convers legitimacy to the electoral process. The IIEC and the government must be prepared for these. By and large, whetever design or regime that the IIEC adopts, it is critical that the mechanisms used must respond to and be adapted to local political, social and economic conditions. They must also factor in the literacy levels, climate, administrative infrastructure and the overall political environment in the country. This is the only way towards which the country and the IIEC can realize a genuinely comprehensive and inclusive, accurate and up-to-date voters register. KEY FINDINGS AND RECOMMENDATIONS The following are the key findings of the baseline survey on voter registration design in Kenya and the proposed recommendations for the necessary action and interventions.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

1. Importance of voter registration: The baseline survey revealed that 92% of eligible voters in Kenya regard voter registration as a very important exercise. This is because through registering as a voter, one is able to participate in the electoral processes and to elect leaders and government of his/her choice. These findings indicate that despite the post election violence after the 2007 General Elections and the related impacts, voters still understand the importance of voter registration as a critical component towards political participation. Recommendation: We recommend that the IIEC puts in place concrete plans and adequate resources (human, financial and equipment) to cater for large numbers of eligible voters who are likely to register in the forth coming national voter registration exercise expected to commence in February 2010. 2. Voters awareness of the Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC): The survey showed that 55% of the voters are not aware of the IIEC and its mandate. Computed against the 20 million eligible voters in Kenya, this means that approximately 11 million eligible voters are not aware of the IIEC and its mandate. Recommendation: We recommend that the IIEC officials should mount serious publicity and public relations strategies and methodologies to enhance public awareness with regard to the IIECs mandate and role, and plans to reform and promote the electoral process and environment in Kenya. We believe that enhanced awareness is critical in inspiring public ownership, confidence and participation in democratic governance and electoral processes in Kenya. Some of the methodologies for awareness creation suggested by the respondents included the use of local vernacular FM radio stations, use of meetings especially chief s barazas, women and youth groups meetings, use of posters, through schools and seminars, door to door campaigns, use of voter registration clerks during registration and use of religious institutions such churches and mosques. The IIEC should consider these suggestions as it designs its publicity and public relations strategies. 3. Participation of voters in the planned national/mass voter registration process to create a new register of voters: 86% of the eligible voters indicated that they would turn out and present themselves to register as voters. Computed against the 20 million eligible voters18, this means that approximately 17.2 million eligible
18

The figure of 20 million eligible voters has been arrived at based on the findings of the IREC (Kriegler Commission). According to the IREC Report, the total number of registered voters as at 2007 which was 14,296,180 represented 71% of the 19.8 milion persons over 18 years who had been issued with National Identity cards as at 2007. This means that the eligible voting population (eligible voters) was 19.8 million in 2007. We have rounded up this figure to 20 million eligible voters. See, Report of the Indepenedent Review Comission (IREC) on the General Elections held in Kenya on 27th December 2007, Government Printer, Nairobi, 2008, p.8 and p.78. The IIEC has targeted 15 million voters for registration during the forthcoming voter registration exercise. See Daily Nation, Friday, January 22, 2010, p.10.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

voters are likely to register in the forth-coming national/mass voter registration drive to be undertaken by the IIEC. On the contrary, 13% of the respondents indicated that they would not participate in the voter registration drive expected to be undertaken by the IIEC. This accounts for 2.6 million of the eligible voters computed against the 20 million eligible voters. Recommendation: We recommend that as the IIEC plans to register voters afresh countrywide, they should put in place adequate resources and effective strategies to capture all eligible persons including the youth, women, people with disability and the elderly. Also, the IIEC should execute its mandate in a professional, transparent and accountable manner to regain confidence of those who indicated that they would not register. Also the IIEC need to undertake serious Civic/Voter education to create awareness on voter registration and its importance. The IIEC should plan and implement together with other stakeholders, special and focused campaigns to target some difficult-to-register groups. Overall, the IIEC should develop and implement strategic, focused and cost-effective voter education campaigns. 4. Minimum age for Voter Registration: The survey findings showed that 73% of voters would want the minimum age for voter registration to remain at 18 years. This is because at age of 18 years, a person is regarded as an adult and is capable of making concrete choices and decisions. These findings tally with the proposed minimum age for voter registration in the Harmonized Draft Constitution Article 104(1a). Recommendation: We recommend that the provision on minimum age of 18 years for voter registration in the Harmonized Draft Constitution be safeguarded. Never -the-less, progressive thinking may require that attention and focus be given to young people who will reach the voting age within one or two years. We recommend that this category should specially be considered as a focus of voter education campaign in secondary and high schools where appropriate provisional register for this category may be established. 5. Identification document for voter registration: The survey revealed that 88% of voters regard highly the National Identification (ID) card and would want it to continue as the primary identification document for voter registration. Use of the National ID card for voter registration also received higher level of rating during the FGDs and among the Key Informants. This is because the ID card is regarded as a security document and the use of the ID card ensures that only eligible Kenyan citizens are allowed to participate in elections. However, majority of the key informants during the Focused Group Discussions expressed concerns with regard to the delay in the issuance of ID cards to Kenyan citizens, which in turn affects voter registration. In some cases the respondents indicated that applicants have to

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

wait for 2 to 6 months in order to get the ID cards. Recommendation: We recommend that the IIEC reviews the use of a passport for voter registration and voting since in some cases the details in the passport and the ID card may differ hence disenfranchising the voter. Also IIEC should consider the use of waiting cards for voter registration. There is also need to decentralize, fast track and streamline the ID card issuance process. 6. Participation of Kenyans in the diaspora in the electoral process: It was established that 83% of the voters would like to see Kenyans living in other countries participate in voter registration processes and elections. Voters felt that since these are Kenyans and may one day come back to their mother land, they should be involved in making political, leadership and governance decisions of their country. It was suggested that they could register and vote online if these systems are put in place or they should register through Kenyan Embassies in the respective countries abroad. The survey revealed that 68% of voters prefer online voter registration. However, online voter registration would only favour 35% of the respondents who indicated that they have access to internet services and also know how to use computers and the internet. Recommendation: We recommend that the IIEC should consider introducing online voter registration and online verification of voters details to enable Kenyans living in other countries as well as those who have access to the internet to register. We therefore recommend that the provision in the Harmonized Draft Constitution relating to online voter registration should be safeguarded and reflected in the proposed draft Elections Bill 2009. 7. Participation of prisoners in the electoral process: It was established that 87% of voters would want to see prisoners participate in elections. This is because they have a right to do so, they are Kenyans and that they will not remain prisoners forever. These statistics tend to support the provisions in the Harmonized Draft Constitution Article 103(2c), which states that legislation for the manner of voting in elections should take into account the special needs of prisoners and hospitalized persons. This is a progressive provision which we propose should be safeguarded and also captured in the proposed draft Elections Bill 2009. Recommendation: The IIEC and other stakeholders in the electoral process should work towards ensuring inclusivity in the electoral process. In this regard and in the event that the proposal to include prisoners is safeguarded in the new electoral laws, then the IIEC should put in place special strategies and methodologies of registering prisoners to ensure that they are not manipulated to register and vote for certain political interests.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

8. Challenges that hinder effective voter registration: It was found out that some of the major challenges that hinder voter registration include short duration for voter registration, distance between residential areas and voter registration centers (particularly in North Eastern Province), lack of National Identity cards, ignorance and voter apathy, illiteracy, poverty, poor infrastructure and insecurity. Recommendation: We recommend that issuance of ID cards should be decentralized up to the sub-location level and if possible up to the polling station level so that it can be implemented hand in hand with voter registration. Also, the IIEC should work together and collaborate very closely with National Registration Bureau (NRB) to have simultaneous issuance of ID cards and voters cards. Also, there should be serious Civic/Voter Education on importance of an ID and voters card. Further more the IIEC should consider acceptance of ID waiting cards for voter registration for those whos ID cards have not been processed. The IIEC should also utilize in an aggressive manner door to door mechanisms for voter registration, and availing adequate resources in terms of finances, human resources, equipment and materials. 9. Computerization of Voter Registration: The survey found out that 84% of the voters would want voter registration to be computerized so as to reduce paper work, fasten the process and enhance verification of the voters details in the register. A better option for Kenya would involve transforming the current system to an alternative based on other population databases. If Kenya were to adopt the Indian system, registration exercise could be done jointly with the Population and Housing Census so as to merge the cost of the two exercises. This however would only be viable if the two processes coincide. In addition, 70% of the voters prefer to be issued with voters card on the same day of registration. These findings mean that the IIEC should also put in place faster and effective voter registration processes so that voters can be issued with voters cards immediately after the registration process. Recommendations: We recommend that voter registration in Kenya be computerized and if possible to be undertaken together with the Population and Housing Census. Also, the IIEC should put in place strategies and methodologies of ensuring voters are issued with voters card on the same day. 10. Photographic Voters Cards: It was established that 84% of voters would like their photographs to appear on the voters cards. This is because photographic voters card would assist in the verification of ones true identity and incase it is lost, it is easier to recognize the owner using photographs. It will also help in curbing impersonation during voting. Interviews with the IIEC officials during the electronic voters cards demonstrations revealed that the IIEC has intentions of introducing electronic voting with electronic voters cards bearing voters photos. Also, the IIEC

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

has informed the public that they will be piloting digital voter registration in 17 constituencies in Kenya to assess its viability and cost. In India19, Uganda20, Nigeria, Ghana, Tanzania, Sierra Leone, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Liberia for example, photographic voter registration systems are applied21. Kenyans too support the use of photographs in registration. However, one common denominator in these States apart from Kenya is the absence or existence of less credible civil registers that may be used as primary source of information on eligibility for registration. In these countries, the registration is based on Optical Mark Reader (OMR) scanning technology that uses Polaroid cameras and the concern stems from the fact that these cameras were phased out by the producer in 2006. Kenya would thus be moving backwards if it were to adopt this system of registration, and therefore should work towards a centralized data based on an Integrated Population Registration System. Recommendations: We recommend that the IIEC should consider the following options in its endeavor to upgrade the current voter registration system. The decision will however be informed by cost implications and responsiveness to the needs of the country and level of technology. It is important to note that any decision taken with regard to updating a registration technology could also usefully be taken within the context of an overall review of identification requirements in the country. For example, whether there is merit in having a civil registry in place or national identity cards. These options are: Applying the highly digitalized new Polaroid camera (DMP) technology with an integrated thermal printer for instant printing. However, this technology costs much more with an estimate of US$ 1,000 per camera22. The use of standard digital cameras linked to a portable printer that enables printing on the spot. Picture quality may be lower, but cost will be lower as well. The pictures could be kept and later attached to the personal records of the voters and/or can be scanned together with the forms using OMR. This system can easily compromise the accuracy of the register if proper diligence is not observed. In Nigeria, some registrations had to be cancelled due to confusion in the entries that resulted from the mix-ups in matching pictures to correct voters. Use of digital cameras as stand-alone devices that would take and register
19

20

21

22

Guide for Voters; Election Commission of India; http://eci.nic.in/eci_main/index.asp. Site last visited on 20th January 2010. The Election Commission of Uganda; Voter Registration; http://www.ec.or.ug/howregister.html. Site last visited on 20th January 2010. Refer to a report on Joint UNDP-EC Workshop on Effective Electoral Assistance, Dar-es-salaam, Tanzania November 2006 http://www.polaroid.com/global/detail.jsp?PRODUCT%3C%3Eprd_id=845524441764226&FOLDER% 3C%3Efolder_id=282574488338434&bmUID=1171013859237&bmLocale=fr_FR. Site last visited on 20th January 2010.

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pictures that can be inserted at a later stage on the voters cards. Voters cards would not however be issued on the spot in this system. The cost in this system would be relatively cheap, but poses other challenges in terms of the process. One such a challenge would be that hundreds of thousands uncollected voters cards as the case with National Identity Cards that remain uncollected by applicants across the country. This option may not get support from Kenyans since majority would want to be issued with their voters card instantly upon registration. Moving from scanners to digital kits with a computer, a camera, and a printer powered by a battery or a small generator. This system was applied during voter registration in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The technology proved both sophisticated and expensive with one kit costing about US$ 8,000 (Refer to presentation and demonstration on the system by the Chairman of the National Electoral Commission of the DRC during the Joint UNDP-EC Workshop on Effective Electoral Assistance Dar-es-salaam Tanzania November 2006). If Kenya was to consider this system, its feasibility needs to be explored in terms of budget and law. 11. One comprehensive identification document: It was revealed that 88% of voters prefer one identification document with comprehensive voter details including a photo and biometrics (the use of measurable, biological characteristics such as fingerprints or iris patterns to identify a person to an electronic system). Thus voters would like to have one identification document for voting instead of them having to carry an ID card and a voters card for identification. This would be realized once the Integrated Population Registration System (IPRS) processes have been agreed upon and implemented by various interested parties. IED appreciates the progress made so far with regard to the establishment of an Integrated Population Registration System which includes establishment of an Integrated Population Registration System (IPRS) Department, establishment of an Inter-Ministerial Committee whose members are drawn from different Ministries, Departments and Government institutions involved in registration of persons including the IIEC and existence of a cabinet paper on Integrated Population. It is imperative to note that even the Indian system that uses door-to-door both in enumeration (registration of voters) and cleaning/validation of the register is still an expensive exercise for Kenya and a duplication of both the population census and civil registration processes. What the country requires in the long run is a simplified Integrated Population Registration System. It is the opinion of this report that Kenyans want to have a single identification document and all institution involved in bio data should work towards achieving this goal. Recommendation: We recommend that the establishment of an Integrated 55

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Population Registration System (IPRS) be fast tracked by various ministries and government departments involved in the registration of population such the National Registration Bureau, National Bureau of Statistics, Registrar of Persons, Registrar of Births and Deaths and other secondary departments such as the IIEC, NSSF and NHIF to put in place a single identification document. All these ministries and departments should underscore the importance of an integrated population registration system such as helping to avoid duplication of efforts by various government institutions and departments, helping in addressing insecurity concerns, reducing electoral fraud during elections, being cost-effective since sharing of population information and data can be accessed more easily, enhancing service delivery by different actors e.g. financial institutions, pension fund, NHIF, NSSF, IIEC, IIBRC, police and enhancing collaboration and coordination between different government ministries, departments and institutions. The government should move fast to address major challenges that continue to face the realization of a comprehensive and effective Integrated Population Registration System in Kenya such as prolonged and bureaucratic procurement procedures, need for intensive and wide consultations to create ownership and support, limited funds, lack of coordination and constructive consultation amongst various government ministries, departments and other government institutions such as the IIEC, NHIF, NSSF, IIBRC and lack of legislation to govern and set procedures for the Integrated Population Registration Process. We recommend that the government should legislate on the Integrated Population Registration System and allocate adequate and sustainable resources to cater for it. Good examples and lessons can be drawn from the Danish and Swedish experience with funtional civil registries which are maintained and used to generate a voters list. As a result, citizens who are eligible to vote are automatically included in the voters register upon inclusion in the civil register. 12. Introduction of electronic voting: The baseline survey on voter registration design in Kenya revealed that 83% of voters would want electronic voting to be introduced in Kenya and that voters cards should be electronic just like Automated Teller Machines (ATM) cards. Most voters felt that electronic voting will help curb electoral malpractices such as rigging, it will make work easier and it will enable Kenyans in the diaspora to vote. However, a small percentage of voters (16%) felt that electronic voting will reduce job opportunities for many Kenyans and that it will be challenging for the illiterate people. Recommendation: We recommend that the IIEC should consider introducing electronic voting in Kenya to avoid many challenges that are associated with manual voting and counting of votes. Electronic voting would address issues such as double voting and delay in the counting and tallying of votes hence election results would be announced faster. In any event, Kenyans are already a population which has a lot

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of confidence and trust in transacting business in electronic form especially in the banking sector where use of ATMs and Mobile Money Transfer Services (M-Pesa) facilities has increased exponentially including amongst the rural and illiterate people. Therefore, a foundation already exists upon which introduction of electronic voting could be anchored. Furthermore, as compared to Brazil, which is more complex in terms of diversity and the illiteracy levels yet electronic voting has been embraced and practiced in Brazil for a long time, there is no reason for Kenya to fear embracing electronic voting. 13. Introduction of Advance Voting: The introduction of advance voting for some categories of voters such as the security officers, election officials and observers was supported by 73% of voters during the survey. However, the respondents and key informants in the FGDs raised issues relating to manipulation and security of the advance votes. The respondents were quick to point out that advance voting should be done with utmost transparency, accountability and security, and without any compromise to secrecy of the ballot to avoid suspicion of manipulation, cheating and should be done one day to election day. Recommendation: We recommend that a clause should be introduced in the Harmonized Draft Constitution and in our new electoral laws to provide for the introduction and implementation of advanced voting for some categories of voters. This would avoid the disenfranchisement of voters who may not be available on the voting day to cast their votes for various reasons. It will also reduce to some extent long queues on the voting day. 14. Voter Registration System: Voter registration system can be periodic, continuous or civil registration-based. A periodic voter registration system creates a periodic register established for a specific electoral event while a continuous voter registration system creates a register of all currently eligible voters, adjusted to take account of voter registration changes between electoral events. The civil based registration system creates a register of basic information on all citizens and combines civil registration with voter registration. The survey findings showed that 48% of voters prefer continuous voter registration system. This preference corresponds with the provisions in the Harmonized Draft Constitution Article 112(2a) which states that the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission will be responsible for the continuous registration of citizens as voters in all parts of the country and those residing outside Kenya subject to the necessary cessation of registration preceding an election or a referendum. It is important to note that even if most voters prefer continuous voter registration process and the same system being proposed in the Harmonized Draft Constitution, the IIEC may want to note that the current system, including the provision for

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

continuous voter registration has failed the credibility test over time. As observed in the IREC Report on the 2007 Elections, the current system is outrageously expensive with very little productivity. Recommendations: We recommend that the IIEC should align the voter registration system with a new administrative and electoral system. In addition since the voter registration system is closely linked to an electoral system, we would like to recommend that Kenya should hold on in its plan to undertake fundamental reforms in the registration system so as to align voter registration regime with an electoral system that will emerge out of the on-going constitutional reform. The Harmonized Draft Constitution already proposes far reaching reforms on Kenyas governance and electoral systems such as proposals for adoption of devolved system of governance structures some of which will be elective. Should the proposals in the Draft Constitution be adopted, a new voter registration regime will be required to provide a framework that would align the proposed elective administrative units with the current ones. We would also like to recommend that Kenya should move away from continuous and periodic voter registration systems to an integrated system in the long run. As observed in the IREC report, the cost of elections in Kenya is already very high compared to other countries with emerging democracies. Such processes like continuous voter registration introduced through legislation in 2002 has failed to produce the desired results, and instead proved wasteful and untenable. This process should be discontinued and the country reverts to a simplified periodic registration that should be implemented twice within two elections. We also recommend that the IIEC should design a simplified and cost effective voter registration system. As the IIEC moves to prepare a register for the Constitutional Referendum expected to be held in 2010, it has to put into consideration the cost of a given choice of registration technology, and its usability beyond the referendum. A recurring underlying point which the IIEC needs to address in its choice is that election administration process must compete for government funds with other priority public goods and services, such as health care, national security, infrastructure development, and other basic necessities, including eradication of poverty, diseases and hunger and development of human capacity if national aspiration as envisaged in Vision 2030 is to be realized. This places additional pressure on the IIEC to justify its budget and be efficient while at the same time obtaining sufficient resources to conduct elections according to international standards and the local operating political environment. We would also like to recommend that for purposes of Constitutional Referendum

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and 2012 General Elections the IIEC should consider establishing an interim simplified register by making some improvements on the current system. This may involve phasing out the use of Optical Mark Reader (OMR) and replacing this with a simple registration using a simple form (see appendix 4) to be completed in triplicate and the information be computerized after the closure of registration period. Primary documents still remain the National Identity Card and a voters card to be issued instantly upon registration. In the long run however, Kenya should work towards Integrated Population Registration System and the enormous resources the IIEC plans to utilize in developing a new registration regime should be directed towards the realization of this noble dream. This would involve a deliberate move to merge the operations of some departments of the Electoral Commission with those of the National Registration Bureau. 15. Voter Registration Method: The survey revealed that 53% of voters prefer manual voter registration methods to online and use of mobile phones for voter registration and inspection despite the fact that 83% of voters own a mobile phone. As indicated earlier, most voters had fears of reduced jobs if voter registration is computerized, made online or if mobile phones are used to register voters and verify their details. Again in regard to voting, 70% of voters prefer voluntary voting to mandatory voting. It is important to note that voter registration methods are either state-initiated-meaning voters are automatically registered by local authorities on the basis of residence or other records, or self-initiated, in that eligible constituents must take individual initiative to apply for inclusion in the register for electors. The accuracy and inclusiveness of a given voters register are central elements in ensuring citizens participation. Whatever voter registration system used, the lists should be compiled in a manner that is clear and transparent, and voters should have an easy way to check for mistakes and correct inaccuracies. Recommendations: We recommend that the IIEC should adopt diversified methods such as manual, online, and use of mobile phones for voter registration and verification of voters details in the register to cater for different categories of voters. Also, voter registration in Kenya should remain voluntary. 16. Distance from residential areas to Voter Registration Centres: 67% of the voters would like to walk for less than a kilometer to the voter registration centre. A significant number prefer to walk between 1 to 5 kilometers to the registration center. The survey also revealed that voters prefer to register at the polling stations and schools. A significant number of voters also prefer to register at homes, market places, churches and hospitals. The survey also revealed that 46% of the voters prefer each polling station to have a maximum of between 500-1000 registered voters while 36% of the respondents preferred less than 500 registered voters.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

Recommendations: We recommend that as the IIEC plans to commence a national mass voter registration drive, it should ensure that the registration centres are accessible to all eligible voters. The IIEC should also employ diversified methods for voter registration including door to door, use of churches, mosques, hospitals, prisons and even market places. Each polling station should not have more than 500 registered voters. 17. Exhibition and inspection of register of voters: The baseline survey findings revealed that 82% of the voters would like the voters register to be exhibited for inspection at polling stations. Also, voters would like to have at least a month set aside for the inspection of the voters register. In India for example, a draft voters roll is prepared after an intensive house-to-house enumeration/registration process where all electors are captured. The enumeration of electors is normally done once in every five years. However, there is a provision for summary revisions done every year to capture those who have changed their locations. During this period, the existing electoral rolls are published at each polling booth locations where claims and objections for inclusion, deletion, modification and transposition are made. This is followed by preparation and publishing of a supplementary electoral roll. Recommendations: We recommend that after the compilation of a new register of voters, the IIEC should display the voters register at polling stations for inspection. This will enable voters to access the register for verification of their details before voting. We also recommend the need to consider reforms in the way objections and claims regarding voter registration are handled. We propose that a local administrative tribunal appointed by the Constituency Registration Officer (CRO) should handle objections. Such a tribunal should comprise five members thus a village elder, local administrative leader, women and youth representatives and a religious leader. Such a tribunal should be clearly provided for in the law governing voter registration and elections. The decision of the tribunal shall be as fair as possible through consensus, and/or a simple majority vote among the five members. The decision of the tribunal should be subject to the review of the Electoral Commission whose decision on the matter should be subject to review by the High Court. The decision of the High Court on the matter should be final. The decision of the tribunal should be made public and displayed for public scrutiny to give a chance to the affected voters to present their case to the Commission. We also recommend that there should be a clear provision in the electoral legislation on the exhibition of and objection against voter registration in order to have a credible register after validation exercise. The inspection period need to be extended from 14 days to 30 days as recommended by a large section of Kenyans who took part in this survey.

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

18. Allowing Voter Transfer: It was established that 79% of voters were of the opinion that voter transfer should be allowed due to voter mobility caused by factors such as acquisition of property else where, marriage, change of jobs, and nomadic life of some communities. However, voters pointed out that there should be caution on the modality of transfer and that transfers should be monitored and limited due to the past experiences of voter trafficking. With regard to the time frame for voter transfer, majority of the respondents were of the opinion that it should be allowed within 1 to 6 months to election day and that there should be a timeframe between the closure of transfer period and the election day so as to allow the Electoral Commission sufficient time to verify if there are any cases of multiple registrations. Voters interviewed also suggested the following transfer procedures that should be followed; Reporting to the Constituency Registration Officer and chief of the area where one wishes to relocate to with a letter or a note from the Constituency Registration Officer and chief of the area where he/she is coming from indicating the reasons for transfer. The old voters card should then be re-submitted to the Electoral Commission. One should fill a transfer form. Verification should be done on the registers in both constitituencies and wards as the case will require to ensure no double registration is recorded. A recommendation letter from the Constituency Registration Officer and area chief or administration stipulating the reasons for transfer is required, which will be issued to the Registration Clerk. Recommendations: We recommend that voter transfer should be allowed to allow eligible voters to register and vote in the areas of their choice and convenience. However, the transfer of voters should be well planned, managed and timeframes for it put in place. Voters should be notified on the periods and processes for voter transfer in advance so that those who want to transfer can do so on time.

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REFERENCES
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. Andrew Reynolds et.al (2005), Electoral System Design: The New International IDEA Handbook, Stockholm Guide for Voters; Election Commission of India; http://eci.nic. in/eci_main/index.asp. http://aceproject.org/ace-en/topics/es/esa http://aceproject.org/ace-en/topics/vr/vra/vra04/default http://bridge-project.org/ http://londonpbb.com/classifieds/polaroid-digital-miniporttrait-15-101619.htm. IED(2002), the Registration of Voters, an Audit IED(2004), the Registration of Voters, an Audit IED(2007), Pre-Election Observations, Registration of Voters: an Audit

10. International IDEA (2002), International Electoral Standards: Guidelines for Reviewing the Legal Framework of Elections, Stockholm 11. Report on the Independent Review Commission (IREC) on the General Elections held in Kenya on December 27 2007. 12. Report on Joint UNDP-EC Workshop on Effective Electoral Assistance, Dar-es-salaam, Tanzania November 2006 13. Stina Larserud and Rita Taphorn (2007), Designing for Equity, International IDEA, Stockholm 14. The Constitution of Kenya Amendment Act 2008 15. The Election Commission of Uganda; Voter Registration; http:// www.ec.or.ug/howregister.html. 16. Overview of the Legislation of the National Elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC); http://www.eisa.org.za/ PDF/drc_elect_law_en.pdf.

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aPPendiceS APPENDIX 1
liSt of the SamPled conStituencieS 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. Ainamoi Ganze Imenti Central Kajiado South Kangema Kasarani Kisumu Town East Lagdera Lari Marakwet west Mt.Elgon Mutito North Mugirango Rongo Turkana South Voi Wajir West Kibwezi Kuresoi Lugari

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APPENDIX 2
SURVEY QUESTIONNAIRE SECTION A: DEMOGRAPHIC INFORMATION Name of the Respondents (optional)........... Constituency Name Constituency Code Please Tick appropriately in the spaces provided 1. Kindly indicate the gender of the Respondents 1. Male 2. What is your age Group? 1. 18-22 Years 2. 23-27 Years 3. 28-32 years 4. 33-37 years 5. 38-42 years 6. 42 years and above 2. Female

3. What is your highest level of Education? 1. Primary 4. University 2. Secondary 5. Others(specify) 3. College 4. What is your marital status? 1. Single 2. Married 3. Divorced 5. What is your main occupation? 1. Farmer 2. Pastoralist 3. Business person 4. Domestic worker 6. What is the Major economic activity that is practiced in this Constituency? 1. Farming 5. Horticulture 2. Pastoralism 6. Forestry 3. Fishing 7. Tourism 4. Cattle Farming 8. Other economic activities (specify). 7. How long have you lived in this constituency? 1. Less than 5 years 3. Between 10 and 15years 2. Between 5 and 10 years 4. More than 15 years 4. Widow (er) 5. Separated

5. Teacher 6. Homemaker 7. Others (specify)

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SECTION B: GENERAL INFORMATION ON VOTER REGISTRATION 8. Do you consider voter Registration to be important? 1. Yes 2. No Briefly explain your response for Q8 9. Do you have a Voters Card? 1. Yes 2. No If No, why?. 10. Have you voted before? 1. Yes 2. No If Yes which year/s did you vote. If No, why.. .... 11. Are you aware of Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC?)? 1. Yes 2. No If Yes to question 11, what are some of its mandate (work) ..... 12. If new voter registration was conducted today, would you register as a voter? 1. Yes 2. No If No, why

13. If Elections were held today, would you vote? 1. Yes 2. No If No, why? .. 14. How would you rate citizens participation in voter Registration in this constituency? High Low Average Dont know

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

SECTION C: INFORMATION ON QUALIFICATIONS AND DISQUALIFICATIONS FOR VOTER REGISTRATION 15. What would you prefer to be the minimum age for a person to register as a voter in Kenya? 1. 16 years 2. 18 years 3. 21 years 16. Do you have a National Identity Card? 1. Yes 2. No If No, why? .. . 17. What document/s do you have that identifies you as a Kenyan Citizen? 18.Which one of the named documents in Q17 do you think should be used for identification during Voter Registration? 19. Out of the following documents, which one has complicated application procedures and takes long periods to get. National ID card Birth certificate Passport Voters card 4. 17 Years 5. Others (Please State)

20. Do you think it is a good idea to require a National identity card in order for a person to be registered as a voter? 1. Yes 2. No Briefly explain your response for Q20 21. Do the procedures for ID acquisition affect voter registration? 1. Yes 2. No How?..................................................................................................................................................... ............................................................................................................................................................... 22 What are some of the challenges that face voter registration in this Constituency? 23. Should non-citizens be allowed to vote? 1. Yes 2. No Briefly explain your response for Q 23

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24. Should Kenyans living abroad/Diaspora be allowed to register as voters and to vote in elections? 1. Yes 2. No 25. Should prisoners register as voters and be allowed to vote? 1. Yes 2. No Why? . SECTION D: INFORMATION ON VOTER REGISTRATION PROCEDURES 26. Should Voter Registration Procedures in Kenya be computerized ? 1. Yes 2. No 27. Should one be registered automatically after application and issuance of an ID card? 1. Yes 2. No 28. Would you prefer a voters card with a photograph? 1. Yes 2. No 29. Should voter registration forms be available online? 1. Yes 2. No Why?...................................................................................................................................................... ............................................................................................................................................................... 30. Do you have access to internet services? 1. Yes 2. No 31. If Yes to Q30, do you know how to use internet? 1. Yes 2. No 32. What details would you like to appear on your voters card and on the voters register? 33. How soon would you like to be issued with the voters card once you have registered? Same day Within one week 2-4 weeks More than 4 weeks

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

34. Which of the following documents do you think is very important for one to be allowed to vote on a voting day? ID Card Voters card Passport 35 Do you think there should be one identification document with comprehensive details of voters for identification during voting? 1. Yes 2. No 36. Should electronic voting using voting machines be introduced in Kenya? 1. Yes 2. No 37. Should advance voting for some categories of voters such as the security officers, elections officials, observers and Kenyans living in Diaspora be allowed? 1. Yes 2. No Briefly explain your response for Q37 SECTION E: INFORMATION ON VOTER REGITION SYSTEM 38. What Voter Registration system would you prefer? Periodic voter registration system23 Continuous voter registration system24 Civil registration-based voter registration25 39. What Voter Registration methods would you prefer? Online by use of Internet By use of mobile phone (sending SMS) Manual

23 24

25

This creates a periodic list established for a specific electoral event This creates a list of all currently eligible voters, adjusted to take account of voter registration changes between electoral events This creates a list of basic information on all citizens

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

40. Should voting in Kenya be voluntary or mandatory? Voluntary Mandatory SECTION F: ACCESS TO VOTER REGISTRATION CENTRES 41. What would you prefer to be the maximum distance from your residence to the Registration centre? Less than 1km 11-15km 1-5km 16-20km 6-10km Over 20 km 42. Where do you think is the most accessible and appropriate place for voter registration? Home Polling stations Market places Churches Hospitals Schools

43. How many people do you think should be registered at any polling station? Less than 500 Between 500- 1000 More than 1000 44 How should the recruitment of temporary voter registration staff be done? SECTION G: INFORMATION ON INSPECTION OF VOTER REGISTER 45. Have you ever inspected the voters register to ascertain whether your details appear correctly before the voting day? 1. Yes 2. No If No, why? .. 46. Where would you like the inspection of voters register to take place? At the Polling Station At the Constituency Election Coordinators office At the Regional Election Coordinators office At the IIEC Headquarters in Nairobi 47. Do you have a mobile phone? 1. Yes 2. No

48. Would you like to inspect your details in the voters register using your mobile phone? 1. Yes 2. No Why?

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

49. Would you like to inspect your details in the voters register using the internet? 1. Yes 2. No Why ... 50. What do you think is the sufficient time for inspection of voters registers? 1. One to two weeks 2. Three weeks 3. One month 4. Two months

SECTION H: INFORMATION ON VOTER TRANSFER 51. Have you ever changed (transferred) your name from one polling station/ constituency to another since you first registered as a voter? 1. Yes 2. No 52. Should voters be allowed to transfer from one polling station to another or one constituency to another? 1. Yes 2. No 53. Should there be a time frame for voter transfer? 1. Yes 2. No

If Yes what time frame would you suggest voter transfer should be allowed? .... Thank you so much for your cooperation. Part 1 Research Assistant Name Research Assistants Signature .. Research Assistants comments.. Part 2 Supervisors Name .. Supervisors Signature . Supervisors comments.

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APPENDIX 3

INTERVIEW GUIDE FOR KEY INFORMANT AND OTHER STAKEHOLDERS

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

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1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18.

Are you aware of the Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC) and its Mandate Is voter registration important?-Probe further Who should register as a voter in Kenya- Probe further Who should not register as a voter in Kenya? - Probe further What are some of the methodologies would you prefer for awareness creation on voter registration. Which documents do you think are important for voter registration? Why? How should your voters card look like? Should it have a photograph, fingerprints or both - Probe further Should non-citizens register as voters? Why? Should Kenyans living in other countries be allowed to register as voters? Why? How? Should prisoners register as voters and be allowed to vote? - Probe further How should the recruitment of temporary voter registration clerks be conducted? What are some of the qualifications that IIEC should consider while recruiting voter registration clerks? Should the Kenyans living abroad be allowed to register and vote? Should advance voting be allowed? Should electronic voting be allowed? Is inspection of the register of voters important? Where should inspection of voters register take place? Should one be allowed to transfer from one polling station to another or one constituency to another? When should transfer take place? 19. What should be the procedure for voter transfer? 20. What are some of the challenges that face voter registration in this constituency? 21. How can the challenges mentioned be addressed?

APPENDIX: 4:
SimPle voter regiStration deSign form
INTERIM INDEPENDENT ELECTORAL COMMISSION (IIEC)
Constituency No. . Date: .. Age F 17 M Langata ID M Sex Place of Residence Telephone Number Identification Remarks The applicant is now 17 but will be 18 years on election day Registration Receipt 0008

Constituency Name:.

Serial No.

Voter No.

Name

000003

0008

Tobias Mwololo

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

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Note: 1. Serial Number should be unique to each registered Voter 2. Voters number should be given to each applicant. 3. Sex has two options of F and M 4. Registration Receipt should be given to the applicant 5. Remarks: To have some comments about the applicant 6. Identification: Indicate the document submitted by the applicant 7. Place of residence: indicate where the applicant is staying.

DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

APPENDIX 5
Anecdotes on Civil Registry adapted from the ACE Electoral Knowledge Network A civil registry is a list of basic information on all citizens (e.g. name, gender, nationality, age, marital status and address). It is maintained by the state. Inclusion on the list is mandatory and citizens are required to report any change of information to the officials who maintain the list (typically the ministry of the interior). Normally, states that maintain a civil registry use it to generate a voters list. The result is that for any citizen who is eligible to vote, inclusion on the civil registry ensures inclusion on the electoral register. A civil registry is almost always based on a national citizen identification number; a continuous list usually is not. Cultural issues seem to play a major role in the decision on whether to adopt a national citizen identification number. In societies that have decided in favour, the use of this identifier allows information about citizens to be managed coherently and comprehensively. Apparently use of the number correlates strongly with maintenance of a list of citizens. Other societies appear unalterably opposed to use of a national identifier, and they often place restrictions on the sharing of identification numbers, such as social security or social insurance numbers, among government bodies. Societies that decide against national citizen identification numbers also often choose not to set up civil registries. The Danish Experience Denmarks Ministry of the Interior describes the Danish experience of linking the national civil registry with the voters list: It is a prerequisite for voting that the prospective voter is registered in the electoral register (the voters list). The computerized electoral register is based on information already available in the national civil registration system (also administered by the Ministry of the Interior), to which the municipal authorities continuously convey basic, administratively relevant information about citizens, including the acquisition of voting rights, changes of address, and death. Thus, inclusion on the electoral register and changes due to change of residence, etc. takes place automatically and continuously. As a result, the register is permanently updated, and only people living abroad have to take the initiative. They have to send a request to be on the register to the municipality where they were permanent residents before going abroad. A printout of the permanently updated, computerized electoral register is made, with 18 days prior to an election as the reference day. Prospective voters who move

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DESIGNING A NEW VOTER REGISTRATION SYSTEM IN KENYA: A Recipe for Regaining Voters Confidence in the Electoral Processes

to the country after this date cannot be included in the register before election day and are therefore not allowed to vote. Persons who move to another municipality less than 18 days before a general election remain on the electoral register of the initial municipality until after election day. Changes in the electoral register because of (1) emigration, (2) death, (3) issue (or withdrawal) of declarations of legal incompetence, and (4) people losing or obtaining Danish citizenship, which are reported to the local authorities less than 18 days before an election, are entered manually in the electoral register printout. Using a civil registry as is done in Denmark requires a great deal of effort. Officials must maintain the data needed for elections as well as the vital statistics data normally kept in a civil registry. Typically, all citizens are required to inform the civil registry authorities of a change in their basic information within a specified time perhaps 30 days from the date of the change. Updating the information in the civil registry will involve some delay, as it does in the case of the continuous register. The same update then is made to other lists based on the civil registry, including the voters list. The Civil Registry and Voter Registration In some countries or jurisdictions with a civil registry, such as Sweden, citizens need not do anything to be registered to vote. The local taxation office maintains up-todate files on voter eligibility, and anyone listed on the civil registry is automatically registered to vote. In other countries, such as Senegal, citizens must apply for voter registration even though the state maintains a civil registry. When a separate voters list is drawn from the civil registry, the task can be performed much closer to an election. Because the civil registry provides information such as date of birth, gender or name, that information need not be collected again for the voters list. This considerably cuts the time needed to perform data entry and compile the list. Developing and maintaining a civil registry is a major administrative undertaking, and is likely to be expensive. The merit of the system is that once high-quality data are available for the population as a whole, the information can be used for a wide variety of purposes without significant financial cost to other agencies. For example, using the civil registry to develop a voters list simply involves adding voter eligibility criteria to the registry and then downloading the data to the election authority. That bodys role in the process is usually limited to scrutinizing the registration data for errors and omissions, and undertaking revision and production of the final list used on election day. With an up-to-date civil registry, the voters list can be created at little additional cost. (http://aceproject.org/ace-en/topics/vr/vra/vra04/default)

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