Kenya’s Electoral Commission has announced Uhuru Kenyatta as the re-elected President in the just concluded General Elections. This becomes Uhuru’s second term in office and final five-year term. A final tally of votes gave him 8,203,2909 votes (54.27 percent) according to the Independent Electoral and boundaries Commission (IEBC) compared to his closest rival Raila Odinga who garnered 6,762,224 votes (44.74 percent) out of 15,073,662 (78.91 percent) voter turnout. “By the powers vested in me under Article 138(10) allow me to provide you with total humility….Uhuru Kenyatta garnered 8,203,290 votes representing 54.27 percent of votes. He has attained 25 per cent in 35 counties,” announced Wafula Chebukati. President elect, Uhuru Kenyatta in his acceptance speech, he said:
“I would like to take this opportunity first and foremost to thank God for the favour he has shown us. Secondly, to thank the people of Kenya for the confidence they have shown in me and the administration. We shall continue what we have already started. I also thank the electoral commission for a job well done. It has been a long wait, but we were determined that we shall be patient and indeed it has been declared. I would also like to thank all our supporters and all the people who have worked very hard, Jubilee supporters, politicians, women and women who fought gallantly for various positions in the country. Congratulations to those who have won and to those who have lost we live to fight another day.
The president also used his acceptance speech to reach out to his main rival Raila Odinga. The Head of State said he was extending a hand of friendship and of cooperation to the NASA candidate and all his supporters so that all Kenyans remain united for the progress of the country.
“To our worthy competitor, we are not enemies. In every competition there shall be winners and losers. I extend a hand of partnership, of cooperation. This country needs all of us to succeed and Kenyans want it to succeed,” said the President. “I reach out to you, to all your supporters and to all those elected to the opposition bench. We shall work together to build this nation.”
Article 138(4) of the Constitution of Kenya 2010 stipulates what the winning presidential candidate in the forth- coming general elections of August 8,8, 2017 in the first round must score to be declared the 5th President of Kenya and being: “A candidate shall be declared elected as president if the candidate receives (a) More than half of all the votes cast in the elections (b) At least 25 percent of the votes cast in each of more than half of the 47 counties.
Chairman of the electoral commission, Wafula Chebukati,“We are confident that the manner in which these elections were conducted. Our democracy has matured. We must have confidence in our constitutional institutions.” “Through all the challenges the Commission has remained focused to deliver a credible election,” said Chebukati. “This election marks a major milestone in our history. The deployment of electronic voter identification what we call Kenya Integrated Elections Management System (KIEMS).” Uhuru Kenyatta of Jubilee Party was challenged by, ODM’s Raila Odinga through the National Super Alliance (NASA) coalition, Cyrus Jirongo of the United Democratic Party (UDP), Ekuru Aukot of Thirdway Alliance, Abduba Dida of the Alliance for Real Change (ARC), and Independent candidates Joseph Nyagah, Michael Wainaina and Japheth Kavinga.
However, NASA rejected the presidential election process terming it as “charade”, “tragedy” and refused to be part of it. “Kenya is not greater than every one of us; it is greater when it takes care of every one of us,” said James Orengo, NASA Legal Representative. “This is a disaster. We do not just hold the election for the sake of it. Election is a process, about participation, right of the minority and even the majority. Our constitution emphasizes on individual rights,” added Orengo. Musalia Mudavadi, NASA Co-principal said, “We have raised our objections, but the IEBC says it will respond to us after their announcement. As NASA we shall not be party to what declaration they are going to make. The issues we raised, have not been adequately addressed.” The opposition reiterated that going to court over election dispute was not an alternative, “We have been there before. Nobody should make us think this is the end of the matter, ” said Orengo. “I would urge the Kenyan people to judge the decision of the IEBC on the context of the constitution not any individuals.” Initially, the opposition had urged the IEBC to give them access to to its computer servers and said it would accept the results. “If they can open those servers, and we all look at it, we are prepared to accept the results of what is contained in those servers,” James Orengo had said.
President Kenyatta, who campaigned on a platform of the foundation for progress his Government has laid down and his Action Plan to create more jobs, lower prices and boost security said he would work harder to make Kenya more prosperous.
“I pledge that I will leave this country better than I found it. We pledge that we will finish the work we started. We will rededicate ourselves more to serve this great nation,” said the President at the IEBC’s tallying centre at the Bomas of Kenya where Mr Chebukati handed over to him the winner’s certificate. Read:Kenya Judiciary: Next battle front for aggrieved and dissatisfied candidates with electoral disputes Now that it has clinched power, Jubilee Party’s five years manifesto will ride on ‘Continuing Kenya’s Transformation,Together’ anchored on three pillars: Pillar One: Transforming Lives, Pillar Two: Transforming Society and Pillar Three: Transforming the Nation.
“Our commitment to the people of Kenya is to continue to work with all Kenyans to build on these strong foundations; to create more and better jobs; to raise the living standards of every Kenyan; end inequality and lift even more Kenyans out of poverty. Together, we will ensure sustainable development and shared prosperity for all Kenyans in a prosperous, caring Kenya,” said Uhuru during the launch of the manifesto.
In 2013, Uhuru Kenyatta was elected as the 4th and current president of Kenya under The National Alliance (TNA), which was part of the Jubilee Alliance with his running mate William Ruto’s United Republican Party (URP). Uhuru and Ruto won 50.07 percent of votes cast, with closest rivals, Raila Odinga and running mate Kalonzo Musyoka of the Coalition for Reforms and Democracy garnering 42 percent. Raila disputed the election results at the Supreme Court which however, held (7–0) that the election of Uhuru was valid and such irregularities as existed did not make a difference to the final outcome. Uhuru was therefore, sworn in as President on 9 April 2013.
David Indeje is a writer and editor, with interests on how technology is changing journalism, government and society. He has been practicing Journalism since 2008. Environment, Agriculture Business, Health and Gender Development stories are his passion.David can be reached on: (020) 528 0222
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