Kenya’s top court to rule on validity of presidential election

Kenya’s top court to rule on validity of presidential election

The Kenyan Supreme Court will decide whether to void the August 8 election today. Headed by Raila Odinga, the opposition claim a

Justices in Kenya’s Supreme Court will decide whether to annul last month’s eleciton today

The Kenyan Supreme Court will decide whether to void the August 8 election today.

Headed by Raila Odinga, the opposition claim a “litany” of irregularities plagued last month’s election, in which President Uhuru Kenyatta was re-elected for a second term. Their 25,000-page petition alleges that voter tallies were missing official stamps and that some election officials lacked the requisite certification.

If declared void, Kenyans will have to return to the polls within the next two months. Such an outcome will heighten tensions in a country with a dark history of political violence—following the 2007 election, some 1,100 people died in riots.

But in all likelihood, the seven-member Supreme Court will uphold the August 8 result. Odinga’s initial claims of falsified votes and electoral system hacking did not hold up to expert scrutiny, suggesting his formal petition will meet the same fate.

Regardless of today’s outcome, the opposition’s condemnation violence and pursuit of the dispute via the legal system is a positive sign for the East African state’s burgeoning democratic institutions. Observers will be hoping Kenyans exhibit the same fate in the constitutional process after today’s decision.

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