President Uhuru Kenyatta has underscored the need to sensitise Kenyans on the importance of registering as voters.
The President said while people were aware there was a voter registration exercise going, there were many who still did not understand why they should register.
“So one of the issue at hand is to sensitise people that there is a voter registration going and also make them appreciate that it is important for every single Kenyan of voting age to register,” the President said.
The President spoke Sunday during a press briefing at Sagana State Lodge in Nyeri County.
The Head of State expressed satisfaction that as a result of his voter registration campaign, the number of people turning out to register had increased.
President Kenyatta said another issue affecting the voter registration exercise was lack of Identity cards among the youth but he had directed all agencies involved to expedite the issuance of the crucial document required for registration.
“We are informing the youth that a national ID is a right not a privilege and they should not pay for the service which the Government provides free of charge,” President Kenyatta said.
To make it easier for the youth to get the identification documents, President Kenyatta directed chiefs and their assistants not to wait for people to collect the IDs from their offices but a point of ensuring they are delivered to the applicants.
“You know the people in your locations and sub-locations. Make sure they get the IDs. That is part of the service Kenyans expect from you,” President Kenyatta told chiefs and their assistants.
He said the Government is also working on increasing mobile ID registration centres, especially in the arid and semi arid areas to ensure the people who move from one place to another in search of water and pasture also get IDs to enable them to register as voters.
“We want to ensure that we can follow and issue them with IDs so that they can ultimately register as voters and participate in the coming election,” he said.
On the drought situation, President Kenyatta assured that Government has set up a committee headed by the Principle Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture, Richard Lesiyampe to look into the issue so as to recommend the necessary action to be taken including budget re-allocation.
“The drought situation is a major concern to all of us but we are already taking the necessary measures to alleviate the problem,” President Kenyatta said.
He said by the coming Friday, the Government will have come up with a comprehensive plan on what intervention measures will be taken to address the drought situation.
At the same time, President Kenyatta asked county governments to also review their budgets so as to address the drought situation.
Responding to questions about Kenya and U.S. relations under the Administration of the recently sworn-in President Donald Trump, President Kenyatta said he expected the relations between the two countries to continue growing stronger.