Kenyan opposition leader Raila Odinga on Wednesday finally decided to move to the Supreme Court to contest Uhuru Kenyatta’s election.
This Supreme Court petition means the presidential inauguration will be delayed for two weeks in case the court upholds his win.
Odinga had vowed never to petition the Supreme Court after alleging that he was rigged out and cheated by the same institution in 2013 when he again contested against Kenyatta.
It is understood that the National Super Alliance presidential candidate gave in to pressure from the international community to challenge Kenyatta’s declaration as winner in the court.
Speaking during his much-awaited announcement on Wednesday August 16 Odinga said that he would head to the Supreme Court despite fears that the court had not been ‘fair’ to the opposition in the past.
Excerpts of Odinga’s Wednesday statement below;
“We had said we will not go court. But with the raid on civil society and determination to silence all voices that could seek legal redress like AFRICOG and the Kenya Human Rights Commission we have now decided to move to the Supreme Court and lay before the world the making of a computer-generated leadership.
By going to court, we are not legitimising misplaced calls by some observers for us to concede but are seeking to give to those who braved the long lines in the morning chill and hot afternoon on Tuesday August 8, 2017; mothers with their children tied on their backs; the sick, people with disabilities, old and young a chance to be heard,” he said in a televised address.
Odinga’s change of heart about the court process follows an ongoing onslaught by the government on civil society organisations that have condemned the post-election killings by Kenya’s security forces. The organisations had also planned to contest Kenyatta’s disputed elections.
The NASA leader said he and colleagues are taking on the mantle of those who have been locked out of the court process even when it is the legitimate right.
“Furthermore, we act on behalf of those who have been blocked from seeking redress in courts such as the sustained clampdown on the civil society that have attempted to go to court. NASA wants to show the world what transpired in the fraud,” added Raila at the press conference at Lavington, Nairobi.
Odinga has questioned the Interim Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) of Kenya as to why results from the polling stations were transmitted directly to the national tallying centre without scanned form 34As and 34Bs.
The IEBC head Ezra Chiloba sent a letter to NASA saying that the commission was not able to send all the form 34As as quickly as NASA wanted.
The NASA head also described the manner in which IEBC results changed on television screens as bizzare, questioning why Kenyatta maintained a constant 11 per cent lead since tallying began.
Four key talking points off the Lavington speech which underline the decision to go to court are;
“This is just the beginning. We will not accept and move on…”
“We have now decided to move to the Supreme Court and lay before the world the making of a computer generated leadership…”
“They cooked numbers to the extent that vote tallies often surpassed registered voters in polling stations…”
“We refuse to sit and watch Jubilee turn our country into a banana republic and a playground…”