Kenyan Military to Man Telco Masts During the August 8 Election

Telco Masts

The Kenyan elections are nearing and we have seen news about it all over. From fake news on social media about the elections and the candidates, to government bodies getting snoopy and monitoring WhatsApp groups for hate speech.

Well, Kenya Police spokesman, Charles Owino, has made it known that the military will be deployed to man telco masts in regions that have been deemed hotspots on the election day. The move is aimed at preventing any form of network disruption as Kenya’s electoral body will be using the network to relay the election results.

The masts being manned are in the regions of Lamu, Tana River, Garissa, Wajir and Mandera, and belong to all three Mobile Network Operators in Kenya, i.e. Safaricom, Airtel and Telkom.

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It has been reported that, in the past Al-Shabab terrorists have attacked police posts and destroyed communication masts in Mandera and Wajir, cutting communication between police officers stationed in the region. The Police spokesman says, “deploying the military in risk-prone areas was critical to keeping them safe from terrorist incursions that could disrupt communications on polling day, stalling timely transmission of results as required by law.”

The electoral body, IEBC, will be transmitting the election results using 3G and/or 4G network. The body also noted that they would use satellite transmission for areas that have low network coverage.

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