Sun. Sep 25th, 2022
NAIROBI: The chairman of Kenya’s electoral commission declared Vice President William Ruto the winner of a closely contested presidential election over five-time challenger Raila Odinga, a triumph for the man who shook up politics by appealing to economically hard-pressed Kenyans and not in traditional ethnic terms. .
But chaos erupted just before the declaration when the electoral commission’s deputy chairman and three other commissioners told reporters they could not support the “opaque nature” of the final phase. “We cannot appropriate the result that is going to be announced,” Vice President Juliana Cherera said. At the place of the declaration, the police burst in to impose calm amid the screams.
The sudden split in the commission came minutes after Odinga’s top agent said they could not verify the results and made accusations of “electoral offences” without giving details or evidence. Odinga did not go to the place of the declaration.
Now Kenyans are waiting to see if Odinga will go to court again to challenge the results of Tuesday’s peaceful elections in a country crucial to regional stability. This is probably the last attempt for the 77-year-old opposition figure, backed this time by former rival and outgoing president Uhuru Kenyatta, who fell out with his deputy Ruto years ago.