With voting over and counting underway, a crisis is brewing in Kenya, which held a general election on Tuesday. Over 80% of the results have been announced and the opposition is trailing the incumbent by over 1.2 million votes.
On Wednesday morning, the election commission website showed Kenyatta leading with 54.4 per cent of the votes against 44.8 per cent for Odinga, a margin of nearly 1.4 million votes, after 94 per cent of the votes were counted.
The opposition disputes the results and insists on a paper trail of the figures published. Opposition leader Raila Odinga says the elections database was hacked and the results breached using the murdered EC official’s identity. He could not reveal his sources on how he got the information on the alleged hacking.
According to him, he is in the lead per the tally of his party’s agents.
In a press briefing that took place in the capital Nairobi, the presidential candidate said his party’s results are “completely different” from those published on election commission website.
Demonstrations have spread from Kisumu to the streets of Mathare in Nairobi, and the police have also intervened.
Police have fired teargas in Kisumu to disperse about a 100 chanting supporters of Odinga who are agitating against the results, according to eye-witness reports.
The contest between President Uhuru Kenyatta, who is seeking a second and final 5-year term, and Odinga, who is contesting the presidency for the third time, has been a hard-fought election that stoked fears of possible violence.
Kenya elections are usually dogged with ethnic tensions in an already volatile region. It is often the focus of continental and global players due to its sensitivity. Post-election violence in 2007 claimed over 1,000 Kenyan lives displacing over half a million others.
Adira Kallo with agency reports