On 10 and 11 November 2022, the Kofi Annan Foundation and the Centre for Multiparty Democracy (CMD-Kenya), with the support of the United Nations Democracy Fund (UNDEF), convened a hybrid post-election review roundtable with local and international election observer missions and key election stakeholders in Nairobi. The roundtable sought to build consensus on the key issues that arose in the elections and agree on the reforms that may need to be undertaken to reinforce the credibility of the Kenyan electoral system.
…even if no election can be perfect, there is a need for improvement.
As all the election observer missions indicated, the most basic measure of success for an election is a peaceful conclusion and an acceptance of the outcome by all parties involved. However, this election was not one without challenges. Low voter registration and low youth-voter turnout, occasional technological malfunctions of voter machinery, rampant mis- and disinformation, and online gender-based attacks aimed at female political candidates were concerns throughout the electoral cycle. In addition, infighting and a late-term split within the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) threatened the integrity of the electoral process, adding to frustrations and uncertainties in the days after the polls closed. These issues showed that, even if no election can be perfect, there is a need for improvement.
The report summarises the key outcomes of the two-day discussions and provides actionable recommendations targeted at the government, political parties, media, civil society, and the donor community. Among these recommendations is the need to leverage the political party framework and political class to regulate online and offline conduct during electoral campaigns. The utility of a Digital Pledge for Online Behaviour, as developed by the Kofi Annan Foundation and the Centre for Multiparty Democracy for the Kenyan elections was also emphasized. Pre-election pledges must incorporate a digital component to promote behaviour change among political actors and their supporters and protect female political candidates.
A look inside the report at some of the recommendations:
Click to see the complete list of recommendations in the report