Multi-Party Politics in Kenya: The Kenyatta & Moi States & the Triumph of the System in the 1992 Election

By David W. Throup; Charles Hornsby | Go to book overview

Ten
Election Day & the Results

Election day, 29 December 1992, was a national holiday. Queues began to form while it was still dark, and by the official opening of the polls at six o'clock in the morning, nearly a million people were outside the polling stations. Over most of the country, election day was calm and peaceful, and the weather dry. There were serious administrative problems in some areas, however, leading to late starts and slow progress. Some presiding officers and their deputies were late to arrive and set up, or in a few cases did not turn up at all. Materials were delivered late to some stations, due to transport problems. Vehicles had no petrol or authorisation to buy it, or were simply inadequate to transport the materials. In Nambale, in Busia, the ballot boxes were delivered by public transport.1 In Amagoro, the last materials were not delivered until 5. 10 p.m., while in Tigania in Meru the materials never arrived at eight polling stations.2 A few polling stations were shifted at the last minute, with no prior public announcement, and voters did not know where to go.3 Others were far too small and poorly laid out. Once the ballot boxes had been inspected and confirmed to be empty by the officials and party agents, they were closed and sealed by Commission and party agents. There were problems in properly sealing the boxes. In many areas, due to poor training, the lid was forced onto the box rather than slid into place. At the East African Bag and Cordage station in Juja, for example, four of 21 boxes were improperly closed, and could have been opened without breaking the seals. In Mombasa, Bunyala and Kisii, poll clerks initially boycotted the election, as they had not been paid their allowances in advance. Rainfall caused heavy delays in the distribution of materials and voting in Isiolo, Marsabit, Tana River, Turkana and the whole of North-Eastern Province. In Garissa, appalling weather was a major contributor to the low turn-out and 20 polling stations in Fafi and Ijara were inaccessible until election day, while at Garsen in Tana River elections at eight polling stations did not take place until 31 December because they were inaccessible due to heavy rain.4

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