The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) has explained why it is pushing for controversial IT company OT Morpho to provide software to be used in the 2021 Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) despite its damaged reputation in the country.
According to IEBC, due to time restraints, it is cheaper and effective to use OT Morpho who they’ve worked with before, than recruit a new company who they’ve not worked with and therefore they’ll need to start everything from scratch.
“Use of existing software with minor modifications has many accrued benefits including reduced time to deploy for the system and reduced cost as compared to developing a new system from scratch,” IEBC acting ICT Director Silas Njeru said as quoted by a local daily.
During the 2017 election, OT Morpho supplied IEBC with the Kenya Integrated Elections Management System (KIEMS) kit used to verify the voters’ details before and during the election.
However, on the election day, the systems failed forcing many polling stations to revert to the manual system which is can be easily manipulated and compromise the election result.
Following the massive fail, Parliament passed a recommendation banning OT Morpho from doing business in Kenya for 10 years. However, the ban was reversed by the High Court in May 2020.