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KENYAN ELECTIONS: ODINGA CHALLEGES RUTO’S VICTORY


By
Yohane Mbeeya Moono

Kenya is one of Africa’s biggest economies and one of Africa’s preferred Tourist destinations. Kenya is home to over 50 million people. The country has long held the view that it is home to Africa’s growing democracies. The country recently conducted elections which have gone to the highest court of that country for validation

Facts about the Kenyan Election

Kenya went to the polls on 9th August,2022. The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission widely known as the IEBC is constitutionally mandated to conduct elections. The body has seven (7) Commisioners. The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission is mandated to announce election results with seven (7) days of the last vote cast

The 2022 Kenyan election was one of the most expensive elections in the history of the country. Kenya was spending a whooping $17 per Voter with the country having over 22 million registered voters
Kenyans living in the Diaspora had an opportunity to vote in the general elections. Equally, Prisoners were also accorded an opportunity to exercise the right to vote.

What Happened After 9 August, 2022?

Long time Presidential Aspirant Raila Odinga who this time enjoyed the support of incumbent and outgoing fourth Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta was up against William Samoei Ruto who is the immediate past Deputy President of Kenya.

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission Chairperson Mr Wafula Chebukati announced that William Samoei Ruto had won the presidential vote amassing 50.49 % defeating Raila Odinga who amassed 48% of the total votes cast.
It is worthy noting that since 2002, every presidential election in Kenya has triggered a dispute, with this year’s outcome also causing a rift within the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission that oversaw the poll. Some Commissioners disowned Mr Chebukati saying the results he announced were not valid and the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission needed to form a quorum when announcing the presidential results.

In 2007 the country experienced and recorded the worst post-election violence with over 100 people killed and thousands displaced when then Incumbent Mwayi Kibaki was declared winner of the Presidential race. This resulted in the formation of a government of national unity with Raila Odinga serving as Prime Minister.

In 2017, Odinga who was making his fifth bid at the top job, also approached the Supreme Court in August, 2017, when President Uhuru Kenyatta was declared winner of the Presidential race. Odinga went further to swear himself as President after the Presidential petition was thrown out. He has since buried the hatchet and enjoyed the support of Kenyatta after the two reconciled.

Petition Filled

Kenyan presidential candidate Raila Odinga has filed an electronic copy of his challenge against the results of this month’s election, a lawyer for his Azimio La Umoja coalition has told a local broadcaster.

“What we did this morning is to file the online copy,” lawyer Daniel Maanzo told Kenyan television channel NTV Kenya on Monday. “After today there will be four days for the other parties to reply.” The physical filing will be done later in the day in the capital, Nairobi.

What Does this Mean for the Future?

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission needs to look at the Odinga Petition and improve on the Transparency levels when it comes to the conduct and eventual announcement of the Election Results.

Odinga called the results that gave Ruto the victory a “joke”. This is a clear indication that the long time Presidential Aspirant feels there is lack of transparency and the in house rift at the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission another borne of contention. National Interest and Patriotism should transcend any affiliation to any political parties.

Kenya needs to live up to the tag of a growing democracy and as such should endeavour to increase transparency in the delivery of the whole Electoral process

Beyond the election process, the President-Elect needs to extend an olive branch to all parties as National Unity is for the greater good of Kenya and the East African Community

The Author is
A Trained Diplomat
Keen follower of African Political Events

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Published by MyWritings

A Writer, A Diplomat in Waiting, Climate Change Advocate and a Football Administrator

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