Elections make a fundamental contribution to democratic governance by enabling the participation of voters to select leaders to represent them within the government and ensure the responsiveness of democratic governments to the will of the people. Elections also reinforce the stability and legitimacy of the political community thus facilitating social and political integration. Participation in an election serves to underpin the rights of citizens to have their voices heard.
However, this is not always attained as restrictions may be initiated to limit fundamental rights that deny citizens a free, fair, credible and peaceful election. Election monitors and observers play an important role in enhancing the transparency and credibility of elections and democratic governance.
The Kituo cha Sheria Elections Observer Group witnessed as millions of Kenyan voters lined up across the country to exercise their democratic right to elect leaders of their choice. Most significant to Kituo’s access to justice work was the fact that for the first time in Kenya’s history inmates had the chance to exercise their prisoners’ right to vote in the presidential election.
Kituo continues to closely monitor the post-election process and the unfolding events.