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Kenya's Raila Odinga Rejects Election Re-run Date Without 'Guarantees'

September 5, 2017 10:04 AM
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Nairobi: Kenyan opposition leader Raila Odinga said on Tuesday his coalition would not participate in the re-run of a presidential election proposed for October 17 unless it is given "legal and constitutional" guarantees.

The opposition also said it is planning to file dozens of challenges to results from races lower down the ticket, including legislative and local seats.

Odinga's conditions for participating in the repeat presidential election include the removal of six officials at the election board. He wants criminal investigations to be opened against them.

"You cannot do a mistake twice and expect to get different results," Odinga told reporters. "A number of the officials of the commission should be sent home, some of them should be investigated for the heinous crimes they committed."

Kenya's Supreme Court ordered on Friday that the August 8 vote be re-run within 60 days, saying President Uhuru Kenyatta's victory by 1.4 million votes was undermined by irregularities in the process. Kenyatta was not accused of any wrongdoing.

The ruling, the first time in Africa that a court had overturned the re-election of a sitting president, was hailed by Odinga supporters as "historic".

Analysts have said it is likely to lead to some short-term volatility in East Africa's biggest economy, but could build confidence in institutions longer-term.

On Monday, the election board said it would hold new elections on Oct. 17.

"There will be no elections on the seventeenth of October until the conditions that we have spelt out in the statement are met," he said.

Odinga has contested and lost the last three presidential elections in Kenya. Each time, he has said the vote was rigged against him.

The opposition also plans to lodge 62 court cases contesting governorship, lawmaker, and local seats, spokeswoman Kathleen Openda told Reuters.

At least 33 court cases were filed contesting election results before the presidential election was annulled, said Andrew Limo, spokesman for the election board. Others had been filed since but he did not have the updated figure.

Also read: I was pained by Supreme Court decision, says Uhuru

Source: news18.com

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