UK firm finishes printing presidential ballot papers

Independent Electoral commission (IEBC) CEO James Oswago (left) shares a word with CEO Africa Policy Institute Peter Kagwanja at a past function. Mr Oswago said ballot papers for presidential candidates are ready February 5, 2013. FILE
By LUCAS BARASA lbarassa@ke.nationmedia.com  ( email the author)

Posted  Tuesday, February 5   2013 at  14:05
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Ballot papers for the presidential candidates are ready, the polls team announced on Tuesday.

Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) chief executive James Oswago said Smith & Ouzman, the firm contracted to print the papers, finished the job on Tuesday.

Eight candidates are battling it out for the presidency in the March 4 General Election.

Mr Oswago said the UK firm had started work on ballot papers for the governor, senator and women’s representative posts.

A list of all the candidates will be gazetted on Wednesday.

Speaking on the sidelines of an IEBC workshop for security officers at the Safari Park Hotel in Nairobi, Mr Oswago said the ballot papers would be ready on time.

“They will be here long before the elections,” he said, adding that hired aircraft would deliver the papers, weighing more than 500 tonnes.

He did not disclose the exact delivery date and time for security reasons. “We will inform you about four hours before they arrive,” he said.

The names of the presidential candidates were sent to the printer last week while the rest were dispatched early this week.

Mr Oswago said the IEBC had started moving ballot boxes to various regions. “We are also printing the voter register,” he said.

But on Tuesday, the ODM party complained that the IEBC seemed unprepared to deliver a credible election.

“Given the way the commission has conducted itself so far, its ability to be thorough leaves a lot to be desired. The IEBC needs to work closely and impartially with all political parties and build confidence,” said party secretary-general Anyang’ Nyong’o.

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