Kenya’s Raila Odinga ‘sworn in as president’
“IRAILA Amolo Odinga, in full realisation of the high calling, assume the office of the People’s President of the Republic of Kenya”.
With these words, Mr. Odinga, 72, a major contender in the August 8 election was sworn in as the “people’s president” of Kenya during a ceremony held at Uhuru Park, Nairobi, the capital city. Holding a green bible on his right hand and two microphones on his left, Odinga was sworn in amidst cheers on Tuesday, two months after his rival, President Uhuru Kenyatta was sworn in for a second term.
“Today’s step is one step towards the doing away with electoral autocracy and to establishing proper democracy in our country,” Odinga said to the cheering crowd.
Though his deputy Kalonzo Musyoka was missing at the event, Odinga said he would be sworn in later, for reasons that would be explained on a later date.
Odinga who contested as flag bearer of National Super Alliance Coalition was sworn in during a ceremony described as informal assumption of power because it is being done outside the law.
The August 8 presidential election in which Mr. Odinga claimed 300,000 lead has been annulled by the Supreme Court and Mr Odinga did not take part in the October 26 fresh election where Kenyatta won with over 98 percent.
The turn out though was was 38 percent of the country’s 19.6 million registered voters, according to Kenya’s Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).
But, according to his party, Mr Odinga had won the August 8 election with 8.1 million votes against President Kenyatta’s 7.8 million.
Odinga refused to take part in an election re-run in October, claiming the government planned to rig the vote.
Attorney General Githu Muigai has described swearing in as treasonable act, which could attract death penalty. Odinga has said he is ‘willing to die’ in the struggle to correct electoral injustices.
Rarieda MP Otiende Amollo said to a local press that Mr. Odinga was sworn in because Kenyans don’t recognise Mr. Kenyatta as their president.
Few hours after his inauguration, Odinga tweeted: “Most of all I thank the good Lord, my family and all those who have undertaken this journey with us. We have arrived in Canaan; thank you for staying the course with us. Asanteni sana.”
Odinga sworn in as president yesterday in Nairobi