Just found out you are registered to a political party without consent? Here’s what you need to do
As the country gears up to next year’s General Election it is emerging that personal data is being unscrupulously used to register individuals to political parties without their consent.
In a statement issued on Friday, the Office of the Data Commissioner said as of June 24, 2021 it had received over 200 complaints from aggrieved individuals who had been registered to various political parties without their consent.
The Data Commissioner, Immaculate Kassait, said her office has since held a meeting with the Office of the Registrar of Political Parties to establish the status and resolved that the names of the complainants are to be deregistered by political parties.
“My Office will continue to engage with the Office of the Registrar of Political Parties, Political Parties and other Data Controllers and Processors to ensure compliance with the Data Protection Act, 2019,” reads the statement.
So, if you happen to find yourself registered as a member of a political party without your knowledge, what should you do?
The Registrar of Political Parties Anne Nderitu says there are two options and both involve writing to the specific political party that you are purportedly registered to.
You will be required to write a resignation letter opting out of that particular party and copy it to the Office of the Registrar of Political Parties. This would apply in instances where you either want to change party membership or you simply want to leave a certain political outfit.
The other option, according to Ms. Nderitu, is to write an objection to the party and copy the letter to the registrar’s office, which will then follow up the matter and ensure that you are deregistered from the party.
“If they don’t act, we follow up and ensure you are deregistered,” said the Registrar of Political Parties in an interview with Citizen TV on Thursday.
Do you find yourself registered as a member of a political party without your knowledge? Anne Nderitu, Registrar of Political Parties, explains what to do
— Citizen TV Kenya (@citizentvkenya) June 24, 2021
According to Ms. Nderitu, her office currently holds data of almost 17 million registered members across all the parties.
The process of verifying your political party membership status has been linked to the eCitizen portal.
The registrar says their in the process of cleaning up the register and are working together with political parties to ensure registration of citizens as members of a political party without their knowledge doesn’t happen again.
A political party is required by law to ensure they update their membership list continuously and make sure it is accurate at all times.
The parties are also mandated to ensure that the membership list is available not just to the members but for the general public at the party headquarters and at all party county offices.
A provisionally registered political party shall be qualified to be fully registered if : it has recruited at least 1000 members from each of more than half the counties, which translates to about 24 counties
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