Kenya’s Deputy President William Ruto wins presidential election

Kenya’s Deputy President William Ruto wins presidential election

William Ruto L and his deputy Rigathi Gachagwa show the certificate after the announcement on August 15, 2022 in the presidential race at the Centre in Bomas, Nairobi, Kenya. The electoral commission chairman has announced that AP NAIROBI - Kenya's Deputy President William Ruto has won the presidential election.

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission Chairman Wafula Chebukati said Ruto garnered 7176,141 votes, or 50.49 percent of the total votes cast ahead of veteran opposition leader Raila Odinga, who garnered about 6942,930 votes, or 48.85 percent of the votes.

After the announcement of the presidential results, protests broke out in some parts of the country, mainly Odinga's strongholds in western Kenya, the capital Nairobi and the eastern part of the country.

The police in the western Kenyan city of Kisumu, some parts of Nairobi including Kibera and Mathare slums, engaged Odinga's supporters in running battles to protest the presidential results, alleging irregularities.

Nairobi's central business district had been deserted earlier in the day when several shops were hurriedly closed due to traffic snarl-ups out of the city.

Ruto, who spoke soon after receiving a certificate to confirm his victory, pledged to extend a hand of friendship to political rivals, unite the country and advance shared growth and prosperity.

The people of Kenya have assigned us a responsibility to execute and I promise to run a transparent, open and democratic government that serves everyone fairly, said 55-year-old Ruto, flanked by immediate family members and political allies.

The announcement was delayed due to scuffles and allegations of vote-rigging by Odinga's campaign.

Four of the seven members of the electoral commission were not present at the announcement.

Juliana Cherera, the vice-chairperson of the IEBC, said that we cannot take ownership of the result that is going to be announced because of the opaque nature of this last phase of the general election.

A supporter of the presidential candidate Raila Odinga holds a rock next to a burning barricade on a street in Mathare neighborhood of Nairobi, Kenya, on August 15, 2022. PATRICK NGUGI AP Cherera said the institution had carried the election process in a fair manner until the final part of tallying the results.

She urged those aggrieved to challenge the results in court.

The commission split minutes after Odinga's chief agent said they could not verify the results and made allegations of electoral offenses without giving details or evidence.

Odinga didn't come to the venue for the declaration.

It is yet to know whether the 77-year-old veteran opposition politician will go to court to contest the results.

Ruto's declaration as Kenya's fifth president-elect followed gruelling days of verification of votes sent from 46,229 polling stations countrywide, at the national tallying center in Nairobi.

ALSO READ: Debt shadow may hang over Kenya's next president.