At least 13,000 people who applied for national identification cards in Kisumu will be able to register as voters after their documents were processed within four days following President Kenyatta’s directive.
This comes as a relief for the region that is lagging behind in voter registration according to the latest statistics released by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).
The main reason for the low voter turnout has been lack of IDs by many people from Kisumu, making it difficult for the region to hi its 141,000 target of new voters by February 16.
Kisumu has only registered 21 per cent new voters compared to other Cord regions like Eastern which have hit 87 per cent.
Since the registration began on January 16, long queues have been witnessed at ID registration bureaus compared to those at voter listing centres.
Speaking to journalists, Deputy Governor Ruth Odinga and Nyando MP Fred Outa said they are going to ensure that the 13,000 people are reached and are registered as voters as soon as possible.
“We will not wait for the applicants to come collect their IDs at the Huduma centres. As leaders from the region, we are liaising with chiefs and IEBC officials to trace owners of IDs and at the same time ensure they register as voters,” said Ms Odinga.
This comes a day after the regional registration bureau officer, Mr George Olela, and IEBC commissioners, Mr Paul Kurgat and Ms Roselyn Akombe, asked residents of Nyanza to take advantage of President Uhuru Kenyatta’s directive.
Ms Odinga challenged the National Registration Bureau to increase the number of staff processing the ID cards to expedite the process.