While the visit to Al Ghurair Printing firm in Dubai by the media, civil society groups and agents of presidential candidates had been vehemently opposed by Jubilee and a section of IEBC secretariat, IEBC proceeded with the plans, inviting and then facilitating the visit.
There have been claims of serious differences in IEBC, with the commission and the secretariat often reading from completely contrasting viewpoints, the former ready for more accountability while the later ever opposed.
What’s difficult to tell is what the report on observations of the printing process by each visiting delegation was to add to, considering the fierce exchange between IEBC and presidential candidate on the Thirdway Alliance Party, Dr. Ekuru Aukot, who was part of the delegation that visited the firm’s premises in Dubai.
IEBC, in a furious tweet, termed the report “untrue”, yet failed to state whether observations by Dr. Aukot were non-factual.
The remarks on ballot paper printing by @EAukot are untrue. We’ve run a sincere and transparent process. Every ballot will be accounted for
— IEBC (@IEBCKenya) July 28, 2017
Dr. Aukot’s report on the visit and observations should worry everyone, as it reveals massive lapses in security of ballot papers and contradicts almost everything IEBC has been telling the country over ballot printing.
While IEBC Chairman spent the better part of yesterday convincing the country that nothing can go wrong on Election Day because of the measures they have put in place, Dr. Aukot found out these measures were mere hearsay when weighed against the bungled ballot printing process at Al Ghurair Ltd which is heavily infiltrated.
For instance, a request by Dr. Aukot to ensure the movement of the ballot papers from the printing firm in Dubai to the constituency level had a “tracking system” in place was furiously rejected by IEBC despite claims that fake presidential ballot papers have already been brought to the country, and that what IEBC and Al Ghurair was doing is what the interwebs refer to as ‘clusterfuckery’ of the highest order, in other words taking people for granted as you knowingly waste their time.
Failure to track each ballot paper from the printer to the polling booth is a blow to IEBC claim of wanting to conduct a transparent election particularly now that there are allegations of ballot papers already being marked in military barracks and other secluded private properties across the country, awaiting to be transported in certain candidates stronghold that would later claim near 100% voter turnout.
Dr. Aukot also observed that the ballot consignment pallets had no security features on their seals which could make tampering possible along the route something that shocked the delegations considering the ballot papers pallets (boxes containing the ballot papers) will be handled by various people before election day, including workers in warehouses the ballots are to be stored.
With allegations that the same warehouse that handles Jubilee Chinese-imported campaign merchandise is the same clearing and forwarding company contracted by IEBC to clear the ballot papers, rigging has not been so real.