Kenyan Supreme Court upholds election of William Ruto as country’s president-elect

The Supreme Court in Kenya, on Monday, upheld Willaim Ruto’s victory in the August 9, 2022, presidential election, thereby bringing to an end to weeks of anxiety and political uncertainty in the East African country.

The verdict by the apex court has delivered a serious blow to the hopes of the challenger and the runner-up in the tight election, Raila Odinga, who had alleged electoral fraud, to overturn the results.

While delivering her judgement, the Chief Justice of Kenya, Martha Koome, in an unanimous decision of the court, stuck out Odinga’s suit and upheld the election of Ruto as president-elect of Kenya.

Koome said, “This is a unanimous decision. The petitions are hereby dismissed, as a consequence we declare the first respondent (Ruto) as president-elect.’’

The court dismissed all 9 issues at the heart of the challenge to the results, which had delivered victory to Ruto by a margin of less than two percentage points.

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The Chief Justice declared, “The… irregularities were not of such magnitude as to affect the final results of the presidential election.’’

With the ruling of the court, William Ruto, is set to take office on September 13, 2022.

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What you should know

  • Recall that 55 year-old Kenya’s Deputy President, William Ruto, was on August 15, 2022, declared the winner of the country’s presidential election after polling 50.49% of the votes to beat his closest rival, former Prime Minister, Raila Odinga, who got 48.85% of the votes in a keenly contested election.
  • The announcement of the result by the electoral commission Chairman has not gone with its own drama and controversy as 4 out of the 7 members of the electoral body disowned the result, fuelling fears of violence and anarchy.
  • However, Odinga rejected the result, saying the announcement of the winner was illegal as well as cited a split in the electoral commission and the chairman’s failure to explain how he came up with the final numbers.
  • Odinga had on August 22, formally filed a petition before the court challenging the declaration of the results of the election.

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