Elections in Kenya were passionately fought and turnout was high. Up to 80 percent of voters cast their votes in the August 2017 elections. These elections have also excited the country.
When and where do people vote?
Polling stations opened at 6am on Tuesday and 22.1 million people were registered to vote, including Kenyans living abroad and in prison. Voters cast their votes in more than 46,000 polling stations, mostly in schools and in open areas such as parking lots and public parks, as well as community halls, universities and health clinics.
Voting closed at 5 p.m., but anyone standing in line at that hour could still vote.
What happens at the polling stations?
To cast a vote, voters had to show either a national ID card or a valid passport. Their identity was verified at the polling station using a biometric machine. After that, voters were given six color-coded paper ballots: for president, governor, senator, member of parliament, woman’s representative and member of the provincial assembly.
According to the Election Commission, a total of 16,100 candidates, including 1,962 women, competed for these positions.
Are there outdoor monitors?
The Election Commission has accredited 18,000 local and international observers, representing local and foreign organizations and governments, including the African Union, the European Union and The Carter Center.
How are the ballot papers drawn up?
At each of the 46,000 polling stations, officials were required to use an electronic tablet to send a digital image of their presidential results directly to the national counting center in the capital Nairobi. Those forms should also be available online so that anyone can independently tabulate the results as they come in.
In areas without mobile coverage, the Election Commission says it has provided satellite equipment for the transmission of the results.
Separately, the physical results forms had to be sent to one of the 290 constituency counting centers before being forwarded to Nairobi. There, the Election Commission had to check the electronic results against the physical forms, before announcing a national result.
How soon will the results be known?
Presidential ballots are counted first. The electoral commission has one week to announce the results of that vote.
To be declared the winner, a candidate must receive 50 percent of the vote plus one more, and at least 25 percent of the vote in 24 of the country’s 47 provinces. If no candidate passes this bar, a second ballot between the top two candidates must be held within 30 days.
Any citizen or group can challenge the results in the Supreme Court within seven days. The court must rule within two weeks. If judges annul the result, as in 2017, a new vote must be taken within 60 days.