But that is as good as the proposed project can be. The rest, if not addressed well, will strangle it before it takes off. The issues can be summarized as follows;
First, the casual manner such a massive project was announced and the scanty details released at a consultative meeting between Mr Ruto and officials of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) confirmed the government has nothing substantive yet.
It was therefore not surprising that it was reported that a technical committee between the Ministries of ICT and Interior is working on the details which position begs answers on whether or not the announcement was either premature or speculative.
Second, Kenyans have not been told what exactly went wrong with a similar project where the IEBC was not too lucky with the Biometric Voter Register (BVR) after registering over 14 million people.
Public trust levels in such projects is fairly low given the unmet pledges on new generation ID’s and security passports.
Third, registering voters is anchored on different legislations as compared with registration of persons. The formats could also slightly vary.
Fourth, the registration could have obvious political implication especially on doing away with outdated population census report as a way of marking political boundaries as well as basis for national revenue allocation. These two aspects are sure to attract resistance especially on imaginary links to 2017 polls.
Legal hurdles are sure to crop up especially as relates to provisions of Chapter 3 on Citizenship and the inconsistencies in the Act. Procurement challenges, as witnessed on the laptop-for-schools project, is another likelihood that the project may not see the light of day too soon.
That said, there are a couple of issues that need to be considered to ensure the proposed project succeeds;