Kenya's ruling to nullify vote could influence other nations

03 September, 2017, 05:37 | Author: Ora Austin
  • Raila Odinga and team celebrate win last night in style – Look at him bust a move on the dance floor

The court ruled 4-2 in Odinga's favor, saying the electoral commission committed "illegalities and irregularities".

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission declared Kenyatta the victor last month by a margin of more than 1.4 million votes, with around 19 million eligible voters.

The lead counsel for the president, Ahmednassir Abdulahi, told the court that the nullification was a "very political decision" but said they will live with the consequences.

Kenya's opposition presidential candidate Raila Odinga (L) talks with one of his lawyers at the Supreme Court in Nairobi on September 1, 2017.

Following the decision by the Supreme Court judges to annul the re-election of President Kenyatta, Jubilee supporters remained calm as they pondered the judgement. The ruling leaves the authorities with little time to improve or reform the scandal-plagued election commission, which may throw doubt on the result. Uhuru said he was disappointed that the will of the people had supposedly not been respected.

Kenya's electoral commission had said there was a hacking attempt but it failed.

Kenya is the first African country to have a presidential poll invalidated by a court.

Chief Justice and President of Supreme Court David Maraga said the election where the incumbent Uhuru Kenyatta was declared the victor had gross irregularities which affected the integrity of elections.

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"I personally disagree with the ruling that has been made today, but I respect it", Uhuru said in a state address.

Kenya has seen widespread unrest since the election, and human rights groups said at least 24 people had died at the hands of police since the vote, ITV News reported.

The ruling did not attribute any blame to President Kenyatta's party or campaign.

Kenyatta's main challenger, Raila Odinga, hailed the decision as a "precedent-setting ruling".

Mr Odinga has contested the last three elections and lost each time, and has claimed the votes were marred by rigging on each occasion.

Thousands of Odinga supporters flooded the streets of Nairobi's Kibera slum and his strongholds in the western city of Kisumu.

Mr Kwarteng fears that the incumbent governemnt may take advantage of their incumbency through the electoral commission.

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