‘Seun Ibukun-Oni, Abuja – The Supreme Court in Kenya, on Monday, affirmed the victory of William Ruto in the country’s presidential election.
The decision followed a rulling on a petition filed by Raila Odinga, who failed to secure the presidency on his fifth attempt.
Odinga had petitioned the court to nullify Ruto’s win, alleging there were massive irregularities that compromised the integrity of the Aug. 9 vote.
While official results released by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) on August 15, show Ruto secured 50.5% support and Odinga 48.8%, the opposition leader said no candidate garnered the outright majority needed for victory.
So-called 34A forms that were used to tabulate results from polling stations were “converted, manipulated and unlawfully dumped into the public IEBC portal contrary to law”, Odinga, 77, had alleged in his court filings.
However, in a unanimous ruling on Monday, the court, after considering several issues, including the integrity of the technology used, the validity of result sheets, and whether the election outcome would have been affected by irregularities and illegalities, Chief Justice Martha Koome said, the petitioners failed to prove that the election has any reasonable ground to be nullified.
“The petition is dismissed”, the seven-member court said in a unanimous decision read by Chief Justice Koome.
Earlier in the court proceedings, the IEBC Chairman Wafula Chebukati, had denied the commission was party to any malfeasance and accused senior government officials, including a top military chief, of wanting the results changed to show Odinga was the outright winner or that there had to be a run-off vote.
DAILY COURIER reports that Chebukati had in an affidavit to the court, alleged that four dissenting electoral commissioners backed the bid to change the results, fracturing the seven-member body; an allegation the four denied.
The IEBC had said in a court filing that its technology was “hacker proof” and allegations that it had been tampered with were “based merely on hearsay in substance and form.”