Kenyatta elected Kenya's president for second term

Xinhua Published: 2017-08-12 03:38:25
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Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta. [Photo: Xinhua]

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta. [Photo: Xinhua]

Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta who was formally declared winner of the country's presidential election on Friday night, vowed to unite the country after his main rival, Raila Odinga rejected the vote as a fraud.

The Independent Electoral and Boundary Commission (IEBC) chairman Wafula Chebukati announced that Kenyatta garnered 8.20 million votes or 54.27% of the total votes cast against Odinga's 6.76 million or 44.74% of the total votes cast, ending a protracted four-day standoff over the outcome of Tuesday's vote.

"Having fulfilled the requirements by law, I therefore wish to declare Uhuru Kenyatta as the President-Elect and William Ruto as the Deputy President-Elect," Chebukati said.

The 55-year-old Kenyatta will be serving his second and final five year term in office in line with the requirement of the constitution.

During his acceptance speech, Kenyatta pledged to unite the country and implement development projects that would uplift the living standards of citizens.

"I thank the people of Kenya for the confidence they have shown in me and we shall continue the work we started and rededicate our service to this nation," said Kenyatta who was flanked by his Deputy William Ruto.

He said he wanted to reach out to his main rival, Odinga of the National Super Alliance (NASA) to "build Kenya together."

"We are not enemies, we are all citizens of one republic. I extend a hand of friendship and cooperation. We shall partner to develop this country," Kenyatta said.

"I reach out to you, I reach out to your supporters. We shall work together, we shall partner together, we shall grow together so we can build this great nation," Kenyatta said.

He commended his supporters and the general public for maintaining peace during the voting exercise.

Kenyatta extended an olive branch to opposition leaders and their supporters, saying he was ready to engage with them in dialogue to solve challenges facing the country.

He urged Kenyans to move past the electioneering period and commence nation building.

Odinga did not attend the announcement of the result, saying their concerns have not been addressed.

The opposition coalition has strongly disputed the outcome of the presidential results, saying they do not represent the true verdict of Kenyans.

NASA chief agent Musalia Mudavadi said IEBC told them their concerns will be addressed after the declaration is made. "Basically (the meeting with IEBC) was a PR exercise," Mudavadi told journalists in Nairobi.

He spoke after the NASA coalition walked out of the meeting with IEBC commissioners where the commission made its stand to announce the winner.

"This commission has shown that it is an arm of the executive. It looks like the president (and) the deputy president knew all along what the commission was going to do," coalition agent James Orengo said.

He accused international observers of pressuring and encouraging the IEBC to announce the winner regardless of NASA's concerns about the accuracy of the election results.

Orengo said the African Union, the European Union and the Commonwealth should adopt the vetting of the observer missions to ensure they have no relationships with the governments of the day.

"The AU should have vetted the members of those observer missions because clearly the delegations rushed to judgement and gave this commission to go on with making this announcement and telling us we can do what we want suggesting that we should go to court."

"Every time an election has been stolen, the Kenyan people have stood up to make sure changes are made to make Kenya a better place. No force on earth can go against a people united," Orengo said.

"Therefore nobody should think this is the end of the matter and nobody should make us feel guilty that we have got constitutional alternatives in interrogating the decision that has been made by this commission that is a great tragedy," he added.

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