Did you know that wearing a branded attire, badge or any other item that identifies you to a political party while voting on Tuesday, August 9, will attract a fine not exceeding Ksh1 million or imprisonment for a term not more than three years or both.
This is according to the Election Offences Act (2016), which lists things that Kenyans are not allowed to do on the historic day. The Act also stipulates that pretending to be unable to read or write so as to be assisted in voting will also attract the Ksh1 million fine or a six-month jail term.
Further, feigning to be visually impaired so as to be assisted is also stipulated as an electoral offence that attracts the Ksh1 million fine.
Voters who forge, deface, destroy or make any other mark on the ballot paper commit an offence punishable by law.
“While in line, be civil. Do not cut in line and do not discuss who you are voting for or ask others the same.”
Another offence that attracts a hefty fine is taking a photo of any marked ballot paper in a bid to show allegiance to a political party.
“A person attending any proceedings relating to an election and who, without lawful excuse captures an image of any marked ballot for purposes of financial gain or for showing allegiance, commits an offence and is liable on conviction, to a fine not exceeding Ksh1 million or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three years or to both,” reads part of the Act.
The law also bars voters from disclosing candidates they are about to vote for or have voted for.
Further, employees are advised to allow employees a reasonable period for voting- essentially discouraging them from making any form of deductions or imposing penalties for their absence.
“An employer who directly or indirectly refuses, or by intimidation, undue influence, or in any other manner interferes with the granting to any voter in his employ of a reasonable period for voting as specified in subsection (1) commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding one million shillings or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding six years or to both,” reads part of the Act.
Other offences such as bribing, intimidating, coercing or compelling voters to cast their votes in favour of a particular candidate are also captured in the Act.