18,000 Observers To Monitor Elections

Chebukati revealed that approximately 1,300 international observers will monitor the polls, with the remainder being local.

At least 18, 000 local and international election observers will be on hand to monitor the high-stakes general election on Tuesday.

With three days to the election, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) yesterday said it had accredited 10,000 observers and was working round the clock to give the nod to another 8,000 applicants.

“As a Commission, we have the duty and responsibility to ensure that observation missions are part of our electoral process. It is indeed our constitutional requirement,” Chebukati said adding that the application of the remaining 8, 000 observers will be cleared before Election Day.

Chebukati revealed that approximately 1,300 international observers will monitor the polls, with the remainder being local.

“We have more observers than the number of candidates who are participating in this year’s election,” Chebukati said.

The European Union Election Observation Mission (EU EOM) is one of the international organizations that has sent observers to the polls.

Former Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete will lead the East African Community (EAC) election observation mission to Kenya, which will consist of 52 members.

The observers were briefed on what they would be expected to do on Election Day.

On Tuesday, approximately 22 million registered voters will go to the polls to elect their fifth President.

Four candidates are vying for the top job, with Deputy President William Ruto and former Prime Minister Raila Odinga, who has the support of President Uhuru Kenyatta, in a close race.

The leading candidates are well-known figures: Odinga, 77, was Prime Minister from 2008 to 2013, and Ruto, 55, was appointed Deputy President in 2013.

But Ruto, who had been tipped to succeed President Uhuru Kenyatta, saw his ambitions dashed when his boss shook hands with longtime rival Odinga in 2018.

Kenyatta, who has served two terms and cannot run again, has backed Odinga for the August 9 election, granting him access to the ruling Jubilee party’s powerful election machinery.

The handshake, on the other hand, dealt a blow to Odinga’s anti-establishment credentials, prompting speculation that he had effectively traded his autonomy for Kenyatta’s support.

Kenyans will also elect senators, governors, legislators, female representatives, and approximately 1,500 county officials.