The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission was on Wednesday morning hard pressed to explain why it has been streaming unofficial poll results and creating unnecessary anxiety.
The commission itself admitted that the results Kenyans have been accessing on their portal as well as the ones which have continued to be displayed on the screens at the Bomas of Kenya since the closing of polling stations yesterday at 5pm were “unofficial.”
“Aspersions have been cast on the result transmission by some of our stakeholders. We would want to state that the results on the screen are not the official results,” IEBC chairman Wafula Chebukati said.
According to Mr Chebukati, the only official results are those contained in Forms 34A and B from the polling stations and constituency tallying centres respectively.
The import of that is that Kenyans should ignore whatever IEBC has been displaying on the portal as well as the big screens.
“The commission has called for the original Form 34As and Form 34Bs from all the polling stations and the constituency tallying centres,” he added.
Furthermore, Mr Chebukati announced that IEBC had set up a desk for the presidential candidate agents to access the original Forms 34As and Bs “and compare with what they have.”
In addition, the commission will start uploading the results declaration forms on its public portal for any interested party to access and verify.
The IEBC statement came after the opposition Nasa had alleged that the results transmission had been hacked into by and the same interfered with to give Jubilee Party’s Uhuru Kenyatta underserved advantage.
IEBC had initially delayed the briefing for over an hour as the Bomas of Kenya where the National Tallying centre is remained eerily silent since Wednesday morning with little information coming from the commission.
On the claims by Nasa that the IEBC system had been hacked into and the results compromised, the commission said they had launched their own investigations on the same.
“If there are such claims we are looking into them. We had a system that has carried us all through and it has worked but there have been concerns raised and these cannot be ignored,” said Mr Chebukati.
But even as Mr Chebukati termed the figures IEBC has been streaming as “unofficial” it seems that the commission is talking out both sides of the mouth with CEO Ezra Chiloba suggesting that the figures were official from the statutory results declaration forms which have been condensed into text format since uploading the forms was tedious.
And the authenticity of the results was not the only thing Mr Chebukati and Mr Chiloba appeared to be speaking at cross purposes.
Regarding Nasa’s claims that someone had used the slain IEBC IT manager Chris Msando, Mr Chebukati said they were looking into the concerns.
But on the same platform, Mr Chiloba refuted claims that it was possible for anyone to get the password as claimed by Nasa.
“The manner in which the system was set up was such that it meets the highest level of integrity,” he said, adding that in any case the said passwords were in sole possession of the supplier of KIEMS, Morpho of France until just a few days to the elections.
Following the exchanges with the media personnel and representatives of political parties and candidates, IEBC also bowed to pressure to return to its earlier format of holding briefing sessions every three hours.