Top Stories / National
Tuesday, 17 Oct 2017 14:56 EATnewsdesk@kenyafreepress.com
The training of presiding officers for the October 26 presidential election was thrown into disarray in several constituencies in Nyanza and Western regions after several shortlisted candidates failed to turn up for the exercise. In some constituencies, not a single candidate turned up, forcing the exercise to be called off.
The training was cancelled in six constituencies in Siaya County after no one turned up for the training for many of the constituencies. The venue of the training in Bondo Town was marked by protests, forcing the commission to cancel the exercise. Siaya is the home county of NASA presidential candidate Raila Odinga.
In Migori County, only a few officers turned up for the exercise at the Lion Simba Hotel, and police fired in the air severally to keep away protesters who wanted to storm the venue to flush out the trainees. The exercise for Kisumu County officers, which was underway at Multicultural Christian Youth Centre in Awasi, went on without incident.
In Homa Bay, Kakamega and Busia counties, the meetings went on without incident, according to a regional IEBC official who spoke to this website. However, the exercise was postponed by a day in Kisii to enable candidates who couldn't travel to training centres to make it there.
The whole of training for Siaya County was cancelled after officers from Gem, Ugunja, Alego Usonga and Bondo were disrupted by the protesters in the same town where three people were killed by police this week during demonstrations against the IEBC. Not a single officer from Gem constituency turned up for the event.
If the training is not held within the next two days, the election would be imperilled in those areas since the presiding officers (including deputies) are the ones who are scheduled to train clerks this weekend.
By early next week, the electoral materials are suppposed to arrive at the constituencies.
Jack is a business and society writer at the Kenya Free Press