Written by Joseph Amunya Otieno
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Professor Tom Namwamba addressing participants from various organisations during a voter education workshop organised by IEBC.
The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has co-opted voluntary services of Non Governmental organizations, Community Based Organizations, Faith Based Organizations, women and youth groups, churches among other institutions to help it run civic education on voter registration and voting exercise in the larger Lugari District of Kakamega County.
Addressing participants from various organizations during a voter education workshop organized by IEBC at Homelady Hotel in Lumakanda, Professor Tom Namwamba said that one of the mandates of the commission was to enlighten voters on pertinent electoral issues so that they are able to make informed decisions before participating in the coming General Election.
Noting that next year’s General Election will be historical, Namwamba emphasized on the need for the public to be properly educated on functions of various electoral positions, including new ones such as governor, senator, women county representative for it to vote and elect to power leaders of integrity.
“In order to avoid past mistakes committed by an uninformed electorate resulting in poor leadership, the commission has embarked on a process that will see it have voters who are informed, ready, willing and able to participate in the voting exercise next year,” said Namwamba.
“The electorate should be able to freely exercise its voting rights, freely express its political will, freely make an informed decision and reduce voter apathy,” added Namwamba.
Namwamba, who is an IEBC agent, appealed to voters to invest in good leaders by shunning politicians who are fond of using propaganda, coercion and threats, handouts and other forms of malpractices in order to win their voting rights.
He urged the electorate, especially youth to vet all aspirants across the electoral posts by interrogating their development blueprints instead of accepting handouts.
On his part, Lugari Constituency Elections Coordinator Mr. Moses Sunkuli Ladema asked area residents to turn out in larger numbers and register as voters next when the exercise kicks off next month.
Ladema encouraged youth who have attained 18 years and above and are yet to possess national identity cards to acquire the same so that they will be able to register as voters in the coming General Election.
Reiterating the commission’s ambition to register 18 million voters, the official said Lugari constituency targets to register between 100,000 and 120,000 voters up from 52,895 voters who registered during the referendum exercise in 2010.
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