The Nexus between Electoral Preparedness and Results Acceptability in General Elections in Machakos County, Kenya from 2007 To 2017
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Many elections in emerging democracies are characterized by unpreparedness which leads to irregularities as well abuse of the process of electioneering. The purpose of this study was to analyse the nexus between electoral preparedness and results acceptability in general elections in Machakos County 2007, 2013 and 2017. The following objectives were used to guide this research; to analyse the influence of electoral training on results acceptability in general elections in Machakos County; to assess the influence of logistical management on results acceptability in general elections in Machakos County; to interrogate the influence of elections stakeholder‟s involvement on results acceptability in general elections in Machakos County and to analyse the influence of results management on results acceptability in general elections in Machakos County. This study was guided by three theories. These are the Contemporary Governance Theory, Theory of Planning and Neo-Institutional Theory. This research used a descriptive research design. The Target Population which was the study unit of observation was made up 350 IEBC official and 50 political contestants for the MP and Governors in the 2007, 2013 and 2017 elections. Stratified random sampling technique was applied in sample determination. This study took 30% of the two strata‟s. In total the sample size comprised 120 respondents who were selected through stratified random sampling method. With respect to electoral preparedness and results acceptability, this study utilized a questionnaire and an interview guide to collect primary data. Ahead of responses processing, the questionnaires which were completed were edited in order to ensure consistency and completeness. Coding of the data was done by the use of SPSS version 23 for enabling grouping of responses given in a number of classes. The nature of the collected data was both qualitative and quantitative. The descriptive statistical tools were used in data analysis. This comprised of the mean, standard deviation, frequencies and percentages. Pie charts, figures and tables were applied in presentation of outcomes. Analysis of qualitative data used narratives statements aligned to appropriate1thematic fields1and outcomes1presented in1the prose form. The study concluded that electoral training, logistical management, stakeholder‟s involvement and results management had a positive significant influence on results acceptability in general elections in Machakos County. The study recommended that IEBC should improve on electoral trainings, add the number of training days and adequately remunerate IEBC officers well. To improve on logistical management, the electoral body should carryout logistics arrangement early enough for the purposes of meeting the set timelines. IEBC head value chain department should ensure the least time possible is taken to ensure electoral materials reaches the expected regions. This should be coupled by carrying out logistics arrangements earlier enough to avoid delays on the elections day. A proper planning by IEBC should be advocated for. Further, IEBC should be transparent in all the processes that are ongoing during the election and should give access to information to all parties involved. To promote quality in results management IEBC should ensure that each cast ballot paper is marked and stumped at the back to prevent electoral frauds. To enhance transparency all results should be announced1at the polling1station and a copy1of the results, signed1by party1agents. A combination of both the biometric and manual systems would help in effective electoral results in management.