Commission’s Sh14b budget for BBI referendum faulted
Hillary Mageka @hillarymageka
Opposition leader Raila Odinga has once again hit out at the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission for putting the cost of the planned referendum at Sh14 billion.
According to Raila, the exercise should not cost more than Sh5 billion, accusing the electoral commission of scheming to rob Kenyans
“In Kenya, it costs the taxpayer an arm and a leg; Sh700 per ballot. If we take the Europe figure that costs Sh100 per ballot and consider, for instance, the 2017 General Election where we had about 20 million voters, multiply that by Sh100; that is Sh2 billion only, this amount is enough,” Raila said during an interview with Inooro TV yesterday.
“But as you can imagine, the 2017 election cost the taxpayer Sh42 billion. Even the repeat presidential elections consumed Sh12 billion,” he added.
The ODM leader said it is only after he took on the commission, chaired by Wafula Chebukati, that it scaled down the figure to Sh9 billion.
“That is still erroneous. It should not go beyond Sh5 billion,” he said.
Chebukati has, however, maintained that the Sh14 billion estimated cost is based on historical data and previous experiences in managing elections in the country.
The IEBC boss cited the 2010 referendum that cost Sh10 billion under Raila’s watch as the Prime Minister and 2017 repeat presidential poll that gobbled up Sh11.9 billion.