56 hackers penetrated IEBC’s systems, manipulated Form 34As – John Githongo says in affidavit

By , K24 Digital
On Tue, 23 Aug, 2022 13:28 | 3 mins read
Former Governance and Ethics Permanent Secretary John Githongo. PHOTO/Courtesy
Former Governance and Ethics Permanent Secretary John Githongo. PHOTO/Courtesy

Anti-corruption crusader John Githongo now claims the electoral body's systems were hacked and election results manipulated to favour Kenya Kwanza Alliance flag bearer William Ruto in the August 9 presidential poll.

In a 22-page affidavit supporting the petition lodged by Azimio One Kenya coalition presidential candidate Raila Odinga and his running mate Martha Karua on Monday, August 22, the CEO of Inuka Kenya Ni Sisi organisation alleges that Kenya Kwanza stole Raila's votes.

Some officials from the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) were allegedly involved in the scheme to rig the election, the former Governance and Ethics Permanent Secretary who exposed the Ksh1.3 billion Anglo Leasing scandal claims.

Githongo was part of a group of election observers in the polls.

He claims he learnt of the electoral fraud from a young man who participated in the activities.

Apparently, the young man was introduced to Githongo by a colleague at the Batian Hotel Suites at Argwings Kodhek Road in Nairobi on August 18, nine days after the polls.

"Upon inviting the young man to state the purpose of his visit, he revealed to me utterly shocking details of how he together with others, were involved in a large scale, well-orchestrated fraudulent scheme that enabled them to interfere with and compromise the IEBC electoral data transmission system and manipulate the presidential election results same in favour of the 9th Respondent (Ruto) to secure a fraudulent win," the court papers read in part.

According to Githongo, the visibly tense and frightened young man opened up to him that he was part of a team of 56 people dubbed the 'the team', who had been recruited to conduct a grand scheme to manipulate results in favour of the President-elect by all means possible.

It's alleged that the 56-man team had a total of 10 supervisors and operated from Karen, Nairobi.

"The other 46 people were accessing, entering and manipulating the entries," he said.

The team's task, he said, was to receive the form 34As from the KIEMS Kits which were sent to their server/platform dubbed 'Uchaguzi Tallying' with the pseudonym 'Uchaguzi 2022'.

"After receiving the said data, they would edit the said form 34As according to the instructions given to them by their leaders and thereafter upload the said edited form 34A's to the IEBC portal," Githongo says.

"The said Form 34As would be received in JPEG (Picture) format, edited and then uploaded in PDF format into the IEBC Portal...The young man confirmed that his team had the credentials to access the IEBC Portal and in other instances hacked into the system."

According to Githongo, the said supervisors included ICT guru and Ruto's Chief of Staff Davis Chirchir, Digital Strategist Dennis Itumbi, one Kibyegon, Morris Mutegi and Baby Serge and Jackson Kandi.

"The team was indoctrinated on the phrase 'freedom is coming' and that they needed to be freed from dynasties; who in this case included the Petitioner," he adds.

The team allegedly had access to the back end of the IEBC server 'through an arrangement between the 1st and 2nd Respondents, officials of the 1st Respondent's ICT department together with Smartmatic', the company that won the tender to provide election technology in the just concluded general election.

"The interface dubbed 'Uchaguzi 2022' was created to receive data directly from the KIEMS Kits before the same could thereafter be sent to the IEBC server," Githongo claims.

The alleged whistleblower is said to have confessed to Githongo in an interview captured on tape how the team manipulated Form 34As by increasing Ruto's votes in his strongholds.

In Raila's strongholds, the team would allegedly take away votes from the ODM party leader and add to Ruto 'without necessarily touching the total number of valid votes cast, which would remain the same.'

Gitongo's source hesitant to testify in court

Githongo said he asked the source to give the evidence before court but he was hesitant to do so on grounds that doing so would put his life and that of his family members in grave danger

"It is then that we managed to convince him to record this evidence in camera. We further assured him that we would cover his face and disguise his voice to conceal his identity and thus ensure his and his family's safety and security.

"He accepted this request. We thus recorded this evidence. I hereby support my averments herein by producing the relevant parts of a video recording of my meeting with the young man; his face has been concealed and voice distorted to ensure his safety and security is protected."

Raila and Karua want Ruto's victory nullified by the Supreme Court.

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