The media had done virtually everything in order to make sure they have covered the election in the best way that they could. There were a number of issues that came up during the general election.
The issues were covered by the media but there were times that the either became biased and unbalanced. We take a look at the issues and how they did their work in making sure the information was made public.
Voter Registration and the voter register
Voter registration was very controversial. From the beginning the IEBC had a lot of challenges. For instance the audit of the Voter Numbers and the register was challenged by the opposition coalition. The company contracted to do the audit KPMG was under fire as they were not experienced in carrying out this kind of audit.
These wrangles were revitalized when the IEBC refused to give out the voter register. The voter register was kept under wraps and it had to take a lot of noise to be made both online and by panelists so that they could release the voter register to the public. The results of the audit were never made public at all and the media never called them out.
Deployment of election officials and domination of positions by specific ethnicity and fears
This was another issue that was covered during the election. However the media never highlighted this issue. For instance there was a concern that was brought out but there was little done to highlight this issue. Media gate keeper’s bi passed this story and never talked about his issue in panels. There was a lot of work done to suppress this issue.
Concerns on procurement process
There were a lot of concerns on how IEBC did its procurement. There was little focus on this issue and it was downplayed as an opposition problem. A lot of work that needed to be done in order to make sure that everyone is on the same page but the media decided to make their shows into political fighting matches and claiming the opposition was making demands that could not be met or unreasonable instead of actually going in to question the problems.
Heavy deployment of police officers
In a report done by the Peace Pen Communications, there was little done to expose the heavy deployment of police officers and security machinery in opposition strongholds. When the opposition raised the alarm the Jubilee pundits shot it down saying they were main areas that violence was going to be erupting from these areas.
The media did not question this theory and instead joined them to portray this narrative. This led to a lot of repression in the opposition strongholds during the 8th August and 26th October elections both before and after the elections. The media even failed to highlight the violence inflicted after people protested the August 8th election.
These heavy deployments of police officers played out badly with a lot of brutality experienced in the areas. There was a lot of work that needed to be done in calling out the government but little was done. Overall the media role on oversight of issues the government is doing were left uncovered.