Kenyans wrongfully listed as members of political parties have been advised to file complaints to be removed from those party lists.
In a statement to the media on Friday, June 25, the Office of Data Protection Commissioner acknowledged those who had filed complaints about the same and encouraged those who haven’t to do so.
“The office of the Data Protection Commissioner acknowledges those who have already taken action to exercise their rights under Data Protection Act, 2019,” read the statement.
Data Protection Commissioner Immaculate Kassait while calling for patience among the affected Kenyans, assured Kenyans that her office is taking steps to ensure Kenyans data are protected.
She said her office was engaging the Registrar of Political Parties and other data controllers to ensure compliance with Data Protection Act, 2019.
She said it had held a meeting with the Office of the Registrar of Political Parties after receiving over 200 complaints from aggrieved individuals enlisted in various political parties without their knowledge.
“As of June, 24, the Office of Data Protection had received over 200 complaints from aggrieved individuals who had been registered as members of various political parties without their consent,” read the statement.
Kenyans last week expressed frustrations on social media after they found their names enlisted as members of various political without their knowledge.
The revelation came after most Kenyans took to an online platform on eCitizen to confirm their membership through a link shared by the office of Registrar of Political Parties on Friday.
Most of them were shocked to find out they belong to political parties they don’t subscribe to, terming the move a breach of the right to privacy.
They accused the office of the registrar of political parties and various political parties of violations of data protection law.
ODM leader Raila Odinga’s son, Raila Junior is among Kenyans who have written to the Office of Registrar of Political Parties to de-register him from the African National Congress (ANC) political outfit.
In the letter, Junior instructed the registrar to expunge his name from the ANC party-list within 24 hours failure to which he would sue them.
The office of the Registrar of Political Parties last week defended itself from the accusations, saying they don’t register members on behalf of political parties.
“Recruitment of members is done by political parties according to individual party constitutions,” said the office of the registrar.o
City lawyer Dunstan Omari also absolved the registrar of political parties from any wrongdoing saying the registration of members is a sole political party responsibility.
“The office of the registrar of political parties has no mandate in law to register members on behalf of the party, this mess belongs to parties themselves,” he said.
He said it was a forgery for any person to be enlisted as a political party without their knowledge, encouraging those aggrieved to sue the respective parties.o