Preventing Electoral Violence In Kenya: How well are we prepared?

With less than 60 days ahead of the August 9th, 2022 polls and the official campaigns having begun, The National Cohesion and Integration Commission has continued to use the 2007/2008 Post Election Violence (PEV) as a blueprint to work closely with security agents to be able to mitigate and avert electoral violence.

The Commission launched its inaugural conflict hotspot mapping report recently where violence-prone hotspot counties were divided into four with regards the risk volatility categories for the 47Counties, 6 counties were identified as High risk, 10 counties as medium-high risk, 23 counties as medium low risk, and 8 counties were low risk. This mapping is part of the commission’s mission to ensure a peaceful election.

Based on the NCIC Report, the Independent Medico-Legal Unit (IMLU) has began its community dialogue outreach programmes in the counties today to sensitize the communities on violence prevention.

IMLU’s elections hub will monitor, document, and report to human rights compliant public order management, police conduct, and use of force, including responding to sexual and gender-based violence in 20 counties as well as media monitoring.

“Communities play an important role in mitigating violence especially during this electioneering period. We recognise that the best way to solve problems and mitigate electoral violence is by engaging with the various communities that we live in,” statement by IMLU read.

The organization’s resolve towards advocating for a society free from torture and related violence remains undeterred during this electioneering period and urges the National Police Service (NPS) to ensure that it sticks to its obligation to ensure that a safe conducive environment is guaranteed compared to what we have previously witnessed in previous elections.

“Village elders, bodaboda operators, women leaders, youth and the religious leaders in the counties are at the forefront of community dialogues.” IMLU

IMLU’s vision is “A Society free from torture and related violations” with a mission to prevent and respond to torture and related violations to ensure healing, justice, and accountability.

With elections quickly approaching, let’s all maintain peace with our neighbours, and avoid comments, hate speech, or groupings that may trigger violence.


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