The Supreme Court of Kenya has upheld the victory of President-elect Dr. William Ruto during the August 9th General Election after a protracted legal battle over the legitimacy of his declaration by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission.
Delivering the ruling on behalf of fellow judges, Chief Justice Martha Koome said the apex court unanimously resolved that Deputy President Ruto was validly elected and dismissed all the nine prayers by the petitioners arguing that the issues raised in the petitioners’ submissions did not warrant a nullification of the poll result.
The one- and a half-hour ruling on Monday 5th September 2022, technically paves way for the swearing in of Deputy President William Ruto as the fifth president next week on Tuesday 13th September 2022.
The Supreme Court ruled that the President-elect garnered 50% plus one vote during the computation of valid votes cast in the ballot meeting the threshold to be declared winner of the tightly contested race.
Chief Justice Koome said court found that technology deployed during the polls met the envisaged standards of credibility, integrity and verifiability as required by the Constitution.
Justice Koome said the petitioners neither proved beyond reasonable doubt that the discrepancies of votes cast in various elective positions were as a result of ballot stuffing nor evidence to justify that the postponement of the election in some parts of the country was deliberate and calculated to suppress voter turnout in affected regions.
She also dismissed assertions that the walkout by the four IEBC Commissioners affected the final tallying of the presidential election insisting the quartet never presented any evidence in court to show that the results were compromised.
IEBC Chairman Wafula Chebukati on the 15th of August declared Dr Ruto who ran on a United Democratic Alliance party ticket (UDA) president-elect after he garnered 7,176,141 votes.
His closest rival the former Prime Minister Raila Odinga who along with his running mate Martha Karua were the lead petitioners contested the declaration after polling 6,942,930 votes under the Azimio la Umoja One-Kenya Coalition Party.
Dr. Ruto with his running mate Rigathi Gachagua who defended their victory had secured 50.49% of the valid votes cast and managed to garner at least 25% of votes in 39 counties to beat the minimal threshold while Raila scored 48.86% of the over 14 million valid votes cast during the election.
By Ian Chepkuto and Hillary Busisa