Addis Ababa, August 16, 2022(Walta) – Kenya’s Deputy President William Ruto has been elected as the country’s next President, the electoral commission announced Monday.
Ruto won with 50.49% of the vote, narrowly defeating veteran opposition leader and former Prime Minister Raila Odinga, who was contesting his fifth election.
He will become Kenya’s fifth President since independence, winning the seat on his first attempt. Ruto’s party, the Kenya First coalition, has won most seats in Kenya’s senate, the second highest in the National Assembly.
The results announcement was delayed for more than two hours past the constitutional deadline. The country’s electoral commission was split after four officials disowned the commission’s chairman Wafula Chebukati’s results.
The opposing officials staged a press conference of their own at another venue disputing the official results. The IEBC’s vice chair Juliana Cherera was among those who disagreed with the results but provided no evidence of irregularities.
Earlier Monday, Ruto’s rival Odinga’s coalition also rejected the election results before they had even been announced by Kenya’s Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).
Odinga’s chief agent Saitabao Kanchory told the press outside the national election center in Nairobi that they had not yet been able to cross-check the final result with their own tally.
“Once we see them, we want to verify them, when we verify them, we will be able to know and to tell the Kenyan people because a result that is not verifiable is not a result,” Kanchory told reporters awaiting the results announcement.
According to CNN, the national tallying center briefly descended into chaos shortly after Odinga’s coalition rejected the results, with fighting breaking out and chairs being thrown in the building.