Keny­atta con­firmed win­ner of elec­tion

The Irish Times - - World News -

Kenya’s in­cum­bent pres­i­dent Uhuru Keny­atta won 98 per cent of the vote in a re­peated pres­i­den­tial elec­tion in which an op­po­si­tion boy­cott helped lower turnout to 39 per cent, the Kenyan elec­toral com­mis­sion said yes­ter­day.

The an­nounce­ment led to small protests in a few op­po­si­tion strongholds but also cel­e­bra­tions in pro-Keny­atta ar­eas. Vet­eran op­po­si­tion leader Raila Odinga said the Oc­to­ber 26th elec­tion was a farce. Civil so­ci­ety groups also cited prob­lems with the vote.

The vi­o­lence has for the most part seen pro­test­ers clash with po­lice but some Kenyans fear it is start­ing to take on eth­nic over­tones af­ter two deaths in clashes be­tween ri­val groups at the week­end. At least 66 peo­ple have died in over­all elec­tion vi­o­lence.

Yes­ter­day, the US am­bas­sador said Wash­ing­ton was “pro­foundly con­cerned” by the out­breaks of vi­o­lence since the elec­tion re­run.

Kenya is east Africa’s rich­est econ­omy and a key se­cu­rity ally of the West against mil­i­tant Is­lam. It also a key re­gional trade hub.

In his vic­tory speech, Keny­atta re­peated his be­lief that his vic­tory in the orig­i­nal Au­gust 8th elec­tion was le­git­i­mate and said di­a­logue would have to wait if the op­po­si­tion was go­ing to once again lodge court cases over the re­sult. The supreme court nul­li­fied the Au­gust 8th vote on pro­ce­dural grounds.

Keny­atta took 98 per cent of the vote, re­sults from 266 out of 291 con­stituen­cies showed. The elec­toral com­mis­sion said 7,616,217 valid votes were cast, rep­re­sent­ing 39 per cent of the 19.6 mil­lion regis­tered vot­ers.

Protests by Odinga’s sup­port­ers pre­vented polling sta­tions from open­ing in 25 con­stituen­cies. The elec­tion com­mis­sion said poor se­cu­rity pre­vented vot­ing in those ar­eas, but the fi­nal an­nounce­ment could go ahead as it would not “ma­te­ri­ally af­fect” the re­sult.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Ireland

© PressReader. All rights reserved.