A section of Isiolo residents protest over lengthy process in transfer of votes outside Isiolo North Constituency IEBC office on October 26. PHOTO/PRESS POINT

By Betty Luke

Isiolo North IEBC Returning Officer has found herself on the receiving end following alleged failure to offer voter transfer services to residents visiting the offices.

A section of residents who spoke to journalists said despite visiting the office severally, they were not getting the services but were being told that the officer in charge was not present.

“Where do they expect us to get the services if we cannot get here?” posed Michael Mwenda during protests outside the office in Isiolo town.

Ms Fatuma Ali said she had travelled from Nairobi to transfer her vote but nearly a week later, no help was forthcoming.

“Every time I come to the office they tell me the one in charge is not around and therefore, I cannot be assisted. It’s hurting and very frustrating sparing our time to come here and not get the services we need,” she protested.

Ms Regina Akai said she had sought a day off from work to transfer her vote but was worried that she might be locked out as the November 2 deadline draws closer and consequently be unable to exercise her democratic right of voting in her preferred area in the next year’s elections.

They demanded the duty be delegated to another officer if the Returning Officer is unavailable most of the times to ensure they are served before closure of the exercise Tuesday next week.

The residents allege a plan by the office to lock out some communities from transferring their votes saying residents from some communities were not going through the struggle.

Isiolo North Constituency IEBC Returning officer Ms Habiba Godana said the office was currently faced with shortage of staff as majority of them were out in the field registering new voters.

“We are trying our best but we are overwhelmed by the ongoing exercise which must be monitored while also offering vote transfer services,” said Ms Godana.

About 300 transfers in the constituency had been done by October 25 with countywide new voter registration standing at 3450 as of Tuesday this week.

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