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[Update] Kenya elections IT expert was 'tortured and murdered'

[Update] Kenya elections IT expert was 'tortured and murdered'

Kenya

Update: The Head of Kenya’s electoral body says its former head of information, communication and technology was tortured before he was killed.

“There’s no doubt that he was tortured and murdered,” Wafula Chebukati told journalists outside the City Mortuary, where the body of Chris Msando, had been deposited.

“The only issue is who killed him and why … I demand from the government that they provide security for all members of the IEBC for them to give Kenya free and fair elections.”

The only issue is who killed him and why ... I demand from the government that they provide security for all members of the IEBC for them to give Kenya free and fair elections.

Original story

A top Information and Technology (IT) official of Kenya’s Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has been found dead barely 24 hours after the elections body declared him missing.

A July 30 statement signed by IEBS chair, Wafula Chebukati, said Chris Msando was last seen on Friday night. ‘The last communication from him is an SMS text sent to one of his colleagues at around 3.00 am on Saturday morning,’ the statement added.

Local media portal, Star newspaper, however, reports that the body of Chris Msando had been found with a severed arm along with the body of an unidentified woman in the Kikuyu suburb, located on the outskirts of the capital, Nairobi.

Both bodies have been deposited at a mortuary. The deceased is said to be the IT chief in charge of the system to be employed in Kenya’s key elections slated for August 8. The system in question will validate voter identification and also oversee the transmission of results.

It is highly likely that his death will in no way affect the conduct of the polls. Even though it is a general election involving election of a president, members of parliament and county assemblies, the presidential race is the most keenly contested.

The race pits incumbent Uhuru Kenyatta who is running for a second term against seven other challengers. Political watchers, however, call it a two-horse race between Kenyatta and former Prime Minister, Raila Odinga.

Kenya elections are usually dogged with ethnic tensions in an already volatile region. It is often the focus of continental and global players due to its sensitivity.

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