Thursday, 19 October, 2017

Kenya: Odinga's move to pull out of poll rerun, grab headlines

Chess players in Khartoum Sudan Fresh twirl as court orders IEBC to include Aukot in Oct 26 poll
Melinda Barton | 12 October, 2017, 12:15

The electoral body indicated that the NASA leader is yet to submit Form 24A supporting his decision to withdraw from the fresh presidential election as required by law.

The results of of those elections were overturned by the Supreme Court, after a lawsuit by the main opponent to President Uhuru Kenyatta, based on fraudulent manipulation when posting the vote-count results on the Web.

Kenya's electoral authorities said on Wednesday they had not received formal notice that opposition leader Raila Odinga had quit the presidential race re-run set for October 26, so regarded all original candidates as still on the slate.

"We have said and we continue to say that we will not participate in the elections if the environment is not conducive for a free and fair election", Odinga said.

The electoral commission is expected to announce the way forward on Wednesday.

He says his withdrawal legally forces election officials to begin the entire process from scratch - a move that leaves more time for his reform demands to be met.

In Odinga's western stronghold of Kisumu, thousands of protesters took to the street, blocking roads, setting heaps of tyres alight and engaging in running battles with police. Honorable Raila Odinga and his running mate sent a letter dated 10 October 2017 indicating that they had chose to withdraw from the fresh Presidential election.

"Uncertainty as Raila withdraws from Oct 26 poll", reported the Star newspaper which pointed out that opposition chief Raila Odinga on Tuesday dramatically withdrew from the presidential rerun and cited a 2013 Supreme Court ruling to scuttle the October 26 vote. However, the process quickly turned sour, with attacks by Kenyatta on the judiciary.

Tension between Kenyatta's ruling Jubilee Party and Odinga's opposition party have risen since the initial August election.