NAIROBI – Supreme Court in Kenya on Monday dismissed the election petition against William Ruto’s presidential victory.
Kenya’s Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) declared Ruto as the winner of the August 2022 presidential election.
According to IEBC, Ruto beat his rival Raila Odinga after getting 50.49% against Odinga’s 48.85 percent.
However, Odinga would later run to court seeking to overturn the results, citing the election malpractice.
However, the judges were not persuaded by virtually all of the grounds cited by Odinga’s team for the nullification of Ruto’s election.
Reading the judgment on Monday afternoon, Chief Justice Martha Koome said some of the evidence presented to support many of the grounds appeared “forged” while some of the affidavits were based on “hearsay.”
On the technology deployed which Odinga’s team said aided the rigging, she said: “We are not persuaded that the standards of IEBC’s technology failed the test. Whereas it is true that kiems kit failed in 235 polling stations, 86889 voters were granted the right to vote manually and the requisite forms 32A were successfully filled. While the audit report was released to public 7 days before election, the voter register was used without any apparent anomalies,” Koome said.
It is only one ground where the Supreme Court, to some extent, agreed with Odinga, regarding the power of commission in tallying and verifying results.
Whereas Odinga had argued in the petition that IEBC chairperson Wafula Chebukati usurped the powers and excluded other commission members, Koome agreed that the power to verify and declare results rests not in the chairperson but in the commission but noted that the four dissenting commissioners had “participated in the verification of the results.”
“Are to nullify an election on the basis of a last-minute board rupture?” she queried.