The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) this week embarked on a highly critical stage in the registration of new voters in preparation for this year’s general election that may determine the political future of many politicians in the country.
Though the opposition principals have not declared their target number of voters they want to register President Kenyatta and his Jubilee political party have declared their target as 5 million while the IEBC is targeting between 4 to 6 million by the end of the exercise on February 14th.
The IEBC has since announced that there are an estimated 9 million Kenyans out there with national Identity Cards who have not registered as voters to be able to participate in the general elections slated for August this year.
Whereas the President Kenyatta is in desperate need to defend his seat to serve a second term in a regime that has been riddled with multi-billion shillings looting scandals, maladministration, outright tribalism, horrendous money circulation in a flagging economy and galloping taxation levels among others – the opposition have the massive challenge of rallying massive voters registration plus turnout on the elections day.
The IEBC equally has the massive responsibility of registering the un-registered Kenyans as well as conducting free, fair and highly credible elections without being compromised to rig them through the power of tainted cash.
Indeed the Jubilee regime is already using its financial might to influence support in geographical areas in the country where it deems to have little or no support and this most likely to escalate during the electioneering process including even the voting day itself.
The most critical issues involving extremely high stakes is not just the number of voters who will register during the exercise but also those numbers turning up in massive droves to vote for their candidates – especially for the presidential election to determine who is going to be the country’s President and Deputy President after the general elections.
Considering the wrong doings of the current regime, perhaps the regions whose majority voters want to retain the duo during the coming elections are the GEMA group of central Kenya and a section of the Kalenjin in the Northern part of the Rift Valley.
Therefore the only most powerful weapon that the voters from the other former provinces like Western, South Rift Valley, Nyanza, Nairobi, Eastern, North Eastern and the Coast is the power of their bloc voting which is already sending shock waves through top cream of the current ruling Jubilee class whose kingpin is on record of publicly declaring that while they are busy enjoying eating roast meat, the opposition leaders and their followers are salivating for their meat.
Indeed it is an open secret that the population numbers of the peoples living in these former provinces are way far larger than those of the GEMA and some of the Kalenjin ethnic groups in Central, Rift Valley and parts of Eastern provinces.
The biggest voting population bloc whom President Kenyatta and his Deputy Ruto are desperately trying to divide and rule is that of the communities residing in the former Western Province. Indeed which is put second largest in the country by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics(KNBS) because of its fractured divisive voting patterns in previous general elections over the decades – to date the divisive manipulative activities to divide this massive bloc are being executed by Kenyatta and his Deputy targeting the Bukusu sub-tribe from the region.
However this bloc has proved over the recent years its capacity to vote as a powerful in-divisive bloc when the voters rejected retired President Daniel Arap Moi’s choice of successor that Is Uhuru over Mudavadi in the 2002 general elections, the two constitutional referendums and the last general elections when they massively voted for Orange Democratic Movement’s (ODM) Presidential candidate Raila Odinga just like they did in that of 2007.
At the moment the communities now have the option of remaining in either ANC or Ford Kenya instead of being enslaved in ODM which belongs to Luo Nyanza just like Jubilee belongs to the GEMA group.
Capitalizing on the Western Kenya’s massive population numbers to register as voters during the ongoing exercise and at the same turning out massively to vote at the coming general election, the region’s bloc has the power to determine the political destiny of this country since it is only second to that of central Kenya who are perennially averse to voting for any candidate for the Presidency who does not belong to their community leave alone even their own cousins in Embu and Meru who have always been used and dumped over the decades.
The communities living in the former Nyanza province constitute yet another massive bloc that the opposition needs to consolidate to massively register as voters and massively turnout to vote at the next general elections.
Though the Kalenjin communities are considered the third largest in population numbers, those of Nyanza are considered the fourth largest in the country and that of the Kisii, Kuria and Luo Nyanza are consolidated as a single massive voting bloc that if consolidated by that of Western Kenya is a deadly threat to the Jubilee regime that has effectively isolated itself from these regions.
This brings as to the former Eastern province peopled by the populous Akamba, the Embu and Meru communities the first being considered the most populous and who have been effectively locked out of the Jubilee administration leave alone the GEMA grouping – therefore if their bloc is effectively consolidated in massively register as voters in large numbers to vote in the opposition where they have been consigned President Kenyatta and his Deputy will definitely be dealt a mortal political blow.
That blow will most likely be crowned by the yet another populous large numbers of the communities in the former Coast province who have also been effectively isolated from participation or inclusion in the Jubilee regime eating Nyama Choma escapades.
The worst aspect of the Coast voting population bloc is the fact that right from independence under the regime of founding father of the nation the late Mzee Jomo Kenyatta have over the decades lived as squatters on their ancestral lands without title deeds which President Kenyatta has been desperately trying to dish out in an apparent effort to placate the communities.
However, the story does not stop there since the fact remains that during the late President Kenyatta’s regime himself and cronies in his government acquired or grabbed huge tracts of land from the region for themselves right from Taita Taveta all the way to the beach fronts on the Indian Ocean.
Therefore it goes without saying that with massive registration and turnout to vote as bloc for change of administration may lie the highway to correct the historic injustices and denials particularly concerning land that these communities have wallowed in since independence to date.
Perhaps the finale nail may come from the former North Eastern province whose population though may be considered lower in numbers, is still a powerful voting bloc considering the fact that they have been so much marginalized since independence that they considered themselves not part of Kenya until empowerment came after the promulgation of The Constitution of the Republic of Kenya 2010.
It is only with serious consideration of these possibilities and the emergence of the National Super Alliance (NASA) composed of opposition political parties from all corners of the country as already identified above that this time round the tyranny of numbers may be effectively used to effectively consign President Kenyatta’s regime to a one term administration through massive voter registration and voter turnout in opposition strongholds.
However NASA must also be constantly on the alert to ensure that the Election law’s forceful amendments and enactment by President Kenyatta to allow manual counting of ballot papers and massive use of monies are not heavily used by the Jubilee regime to manipulate and rig the coming general elections.