Kenya’s Odinga files court challenge to presidential poll result



Kenya’s defeated presidential candidate Raila Odinga filed an online petition to the country’s top court on Monday challenging the result of the August 9 election that handed victory to his rival William Ruto, his lawyer told AFP.

Odinga, a veteran opposition leader who ran with the backing of the ruling party, has rejected the outcome of the poll, branding it a “travesty.” He narrowly lost to Ruto by around 230,000 votes — less than two percentage points.

“It has already been sent to them and they will see it soon,” Daniel Maanzo, a member of the 77-year-old politician’s legal team, said of the petition. “We have hopes that we have made a good case and will win,” he added. Paul Mwangi, who is also representing Odinga, told AFP that a physical copy of the petition would be filed before the Supreme Court’s 2 pm (1100 GMT) deadline.

Although polling day passed off peacefully, the announcement of the results a week ago sparked angry protests in some Odinga strongholds and there are fears that a drawn-out dispute may lead to violence in a country with a history of post-poll unrest. Since 2002, every presidential election in Kenya has triggered a dispute, with this year’s outcome also causing a rift within the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) which oversaw the poll.—AFP

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