Youths in Busia County have launched voter listing mobilization exercise targeting prisons and higher learning institutions.
In collaboration with the office of the area Woman Representative Florence Mutua, the youths under the banner, Young Captains Lobby Group of Orange Democratic Movement Party are pushing for 100 per cent voter registration in prisons in a bid to expand democratic participation among inmates.
The group which mostly comprises university and college students is also targeting institutions of higher learning to sensitize the youths to register as voters ahead of the August polls.
The group’s County Busia Chapter Chair Joy Shammah led the team to Busia Women Prison where they had a session with the inmates, reminding them that their democratic right was still valid despite being under government custody.
“Many people have national identity cards but are so reluctant to register as voters. Ours is to engage them, and motivate them to have them understand the need to exercise their democratic rights,” she said.
She added: “It is our mandate to come out and choose our leaders because the change we want in governance and our societies will only happen if we pick the best leaders to steer them.”
She said it is time for the youths to transit from being spectators in the leadership arena, but participate actively in electing their preferred leaders, some of whom should be their fellow youths.
The second phase of the enhanced continuous voter registration exercise is expected to kick off on January 17, and will run for 21 days.
Head of Special Programs at the Woman Representative’s office Onana Afulo who accompanied the youths at the prison also delivered sanitary pads which she said had been funded by the National Government Affirmative Action Fund (NGAAF).
“We are collaborating with these youths, and we have always come to this facility to support them on various needs,” said Afulo.