The National Super Alliance has expressed doubt the IEBC can deliver an honest General Election and raised fears the data centre could be hacked.
It said the polls stand impugned, the timelines breached, the voter register polluted and without a credible independent audit.
“There is no chance in the world you will be able to comply with … provisions of the Elections Act, even within the next 60 days. In any event, the timeliness have been breached,” NASA said in a letter to electoral agency boss Wafula Chebukati. It raises issues it wants addressed.
In an eight-page letter dated February 20, NASA says the August 8 polls could be legally compromised even before they are held.
On February 8, the opposition raised many of the same issues in a meeting with the IEBC and at a press conference. They also include auditing, cleaning and unifying the voter register, vetting secretariat staff, disclosing details of diaspora voters, accepting as final results declared at the constituency level.
The IEBC had promised to respond within a week. It has not done so.
NASA chiefs are demanding answers in 11 areas involving security and integrity of the IEBC data centre, including any external connections to critical electoral database and servers.
“What are the external interfaces connected to IEBC and the identity of the users and purpose thereof?…Do these include NIS, Jubilee Party, the Immigration Department and other third parties?” the letter said.
The allegation of server security rekindles memories of the 2013 polls when Cord alleged that President Uhuru Kenyatta’s TNA hacked the results transmission system.
ODM chief Raila Odinga had claimed that a call center, Kencall EPZ Limited, co-hosted on one server the database of the IEBC — together with that of TNA — and both these databases were synchronised. Raila said the two databases shared the same IP address.
Yesterday, IEBC chief Wafula Chebukati was meeting diplomats and promised to respond at another time.
The new letter to the IEBC is written by Siaya Senator James Orengo on behalf of NASA principals Raila, Kalonzo Musyoka (Wiper), Musalia Mudavadi (ANC) and Moses Wetang’ula (Ford Kenya).
Orengo writes that IEBC had described disturbing challenges during at a meeting on February 16.
Among the challenges reportedly raised by the new commissioners is the storage in unsecured warehouses of servers used in the 2013 polls — loaded with critical data.
“At our meeting, the commission painted a grim and pessimistic picture of the challenges ahead and the state of unpreparedness shackling the commission,” the letter said.
Publicly, the IEBC has often stated it is ready to deliver free and fair polls.
NASA demands answers and gave a one-week ultimatum, which lapsed yesterday.
“How is data from the BVR kits moved to the main database? Who is responsible for consolidation? Veracity of the ability of the NIS to access data with a parallel system of managing electoral results?” the letter asks.
“What is the role of Morpho (a private company), if any, at the commission? What are the skills sets of the persons operating the database, together with their qualifications and identity?”
Morpho is the French firm that supplied the 15,000 Biometric Voter Registration kits used in 2013.
However, just last month, there were claims that IEBC tender documents for supply of an integrated electronic electoral system were designed and prepared by Morpho. IEBC denied that.
But NASA says various licenses for software and equipment used by the electoral agency belong to Morpho and most have expired. This means Morpho will invoice Kenya to renew the license of every piece of expired software.
NASA wants the IEBC to establish a new data centre and secondary data centre, acquire new servers and assure generally the commission will have suitable IT infrastructure before the polls.
In the letter, NASA expressed concern the tender for award of the Integrated Elections Management Systems, IEMS, has not been awarded five months to the polls.
According to the elections Act, IEBC should put in place the technology at least eight months to the General Election.
“The systems have not been integrated. With just over five months to go you have not procured, let alone put in place technology necessary to conduct the General Election,” the letter states.
With a contaminated register not subjected to a statutory audit, NASA said the 2017 polls stand impugned and their legality compromised even before they are held.
In a startling admission of a flawed register, the IEBC acknowledged 128,926 Kenyans share ID or passport numbers in its database. Former Presidents Mwai Kibaki and Daniel arap Moi are among thousands of Kenyans whose IDs were used in the double registration.
On January 24, Raila said the opposition has credible information the NIS is interfering heavily in voter registration to skew the poll outcome. He said the NIS and its new director general Philip Wachira Kameru were again setting the stage for rigging, as he said happened in 2007 and 2013.
Raila says both elections were stolen.
“The NIS is also interfering with voter registration by having youths, whose data were collected through the dubious NYS exercise over the last few years, registered as voters without their knowledge,” Raila said.
He said it was using BVR kits to register Ugandans and Ethiopians, a statement the IEBC denied.
However, weeks later bodyguards to Teso South MP Mary Emase were arrested in Uganda on claims of recruiting Ugandans to register as Kenyan voters.
Emase herself allegedly escaped narrowly.