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IEBC concerned over the disabled in ongoing voter registration

Sunday January 22 2017
By REITZ MUREITHI

Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has a large percentage of those who will fail to be registered as voters are the disabled.

The Central Rift regional coordinator David Towett, on Saturday said most of the disabled persons do not understand the importance of voting or registering as a voters.

"We do not have books for instance in braille. Even organisations that have taken up voter education tend to forget this group," Mr Towett said during a voter education training forum in Nakuru for the disabled.

He said there was need to empower them so that they too can participate in the mass voter registration ahead of the August polls.

The training which was organised by IEBC and Centre for Enhancing Democracy and Good Governance (CEDGG), a non-governmental organization, involved 60 trainees from 8 sub Counties — Molo, Naivasha, Gilgil, Nakuru Town East, Nakuru Town West, Rongai, Baringo and Subukia.

According to the organisation’s programmes assistant Ms Wilkister Akinyi, the training was a strategy to reach out to other groups.

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Ms Akinyi added that once the information was passed to them, they will be able to participate in nominating and electing leaders who can represent them.

"For a long time people have been speaking on their behalf; we want them to articulate their issues themselves," Ms Akinyi said.

One of the participants Ms Symprose Peter, an albino, admitted that the training was important explaining that presiding officers too should be sensitised on the needs of people with special needs.

"People with albinism should not queue when voting because the sun hurts our skin. The officers at the polling stations should be aware of that," Ms Peter said.

However Mr Stephen Waweru the chairman of the deaf in Nakuru County said more knowledge was still needed for people with special needs to be at par with the rest of the population.

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